Marriage Advice From A Taxidermist Whose Creations Are Reanimating

Posted Posted in animals, artsy fartsy, comedy, goth

Dear Marriage Advice From A Taxidermist:

My wife and I disagree on almost everything these days- what to have for dinner, where we should park the car, what movie to watch.  It seems I couldn’t have picked a less compatible partner, and the constant conflict is making my life hell.  What should we do?-  Canton, OH

Dear Conflict in Canton; 

You’ve reached a crossroads that tests many marriages, but you can move past it.  First, check in with your wife that there’s no larger issue at work.  If there isn’t, have a talk about why you chose to be together and good memories you have together.  Try to be considerate of each other’s feelings, and remind each other why you make a good pair.  Learn to compromise.

 It looked like my stuffed jackalope just moved a little.  That’s funny.  Must be the light in here.

Good luck!  Let me take a look at this thing and see if I can think of any more good advice.

Dear Marriage Advice From A Taxidermist;

   I hope it’s ok that I’m writing for marriage advice, I’m not yet married but I’m worried about tying the knot with my longtime boyfriend, Simon.  We love each other and I want to commit, but we’re both men and I guess my upbringing says that men making a life together is wrong, can I shake it off and have a good marriage? – Temecula, CA

Dear Twosome in Temecula;

  That sounds really nice, what you’ve got going on.  As far as internalized negative feelings about gay marriage, that’s a little out of my depth, but I’d encourage you to talk to a therapist you feel comfortable with about how to move past these feelings before taking the plunge.  You owe it to yourself and your partner to go into this with… well the jackalope is moving again.  It’s wriggling.  Maybe it has termites or something?  It looks…terrible.  Just terrible.

 Good luck and Mazel Tov!

Dear Taxidermist;

My husband always seems to pay more attention to other women than he does to me.  He’s not flirting, he just always seems to have his antennae up when there’s another lady around, you know?  It hurts my feelings, but I haven’t said anything because I don’t want to look like a shrew.  What do you think? – Shreveport, LA

Dear Shrew in Shreveport;

  Sorry, of course not.  You’re not being a shrew.  I’m just distracted, I also have a stuffed shrew in my office, he’s a cute little thing, the size of a kumquat, and he’s moving, too.  He’s nailed to his mount, but it looks like he’s writhing and turning around as best he can.  It’s really awful.  Ummm, you know, after you’re with someone for a while, you can begin to appreciate other people, it doesn’t necessarily mean bad things for your marriage, just that maybe things are a little stale, I’d try, I don’t know, have you changed your hair or something?  The shrew is now crawling towards me, pulling its little fanciful forest scene with it.  Why is something so tiny so bone-chilling?  OK, change up your look.  New lipstick.  See if that helps.

Dear Taxidermist;

I can’t help but notice that you think some of your stuffed specimens are moving around.  Shouldn’t you be worrying about that, and not this column?  – Cuyahoga, OH

Dear Curious in Cuyahoga;

  I think you’re right, I mean, at first I thought my mind was playing tricks on me and I was trying to distract myself from the task at hand, but with every passing minute I am more and more convinced that these things are moving.  I mean, this is impossible.  They can’t come back to life.  There’s nothing to come back to life, these things are skins arranged on molds.  You know, their insides are basically foam wig stands shaped like animals.  I can hear them stirring, moving towards me, their bases scraping against the wooden floor.  I really don’t know what to do and I’m not sure why I’m writing this down.  Just trying to leave a record for whomever finds me, perhaps.

Dear Taxidermist;

  Don’t you think this is maybe all a hallucination, or a dream?  I mean, what are you even doing?  Why would anyone ask you for marriage advice?  You have no counselling or therapy background of any kind.  You’re not even married, right?  Didn’t your wife die in a hunting “accident”?- Siskiyou, CA

Dear Suspicious in Siskiyou;

  You bring up some really good points.  I wish you had asked me a question I could help you with, but now that you bring up my departed wife, I can smell her perfume.  There hasn’t been another woman in my life since her passing, because I don’t know how I would explain to another woman that she is also stuffed in my trophy room.  It was a massive labor of love to remember a truly lovely woman I cared very much for, but who just didn’t know when to shut up, like that poor sonofabitch’s wife in Canton, sounds like.  Friend, something just tapped me on the shoulder and I can’t tell you how much I don’t want to turn around.

Jackie Kashian’s Dork Forest!

Posted Posted in comedy, goth, podcast

I got to do an episode of the legendary Dork Forest Podcast with Jackie Kashian, whom I inundate with Labyrinth trivia. I also try to help her figure out the difference between David Bowie and Billy Idol. I love her, I love Labyrinth, and I love all of you. I name check Melissa Hansson and Jemiah Jefferson in this episode!

Check it out: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-dork-forest/id210939624?mt=2&i=1000402149479

Best Friends Forever!

Posted Posted in comedy, goth, women

Written for Jonathan Bradley Welch’s amazing A Very Special Episode show!  Theme: BFF’s!

I met my best friend the first week of college.  She was looking for someone in Bruce Hall, which was the art dorm, because it had art studios on the top floor. Also, it was the cheapest.  It didn’t have air conditioning, and it was supposed to be haunted.

I heard a kid died elevator surfing, where you get into an elevator shaft and ride on an elevator until someone takes it to the top floor and you fucking die. 

Instead of getting a haunted elevator, we got the elevator closed the rest of the year and everybody had to take the stairs.

Don’t pity him.  Pity us.

Melissa walked past my door, and I went out and said, hi, it’s nice to meet another goth.  She said, what’s a goth?  And I said, it’s us.  It’s what we are.

Sidebar: this story is before Edward Scissorhands and Hot Topic. This was before the Craft, before the 2000’s when everyone was wearing vinyl pants and talking about how they partied like a rockstar.  Mel was from a small town in Texas called Palestine, which had the same population as my high school.  Word of goth had not gotten there yet, and she may have believed she was the only person who read tarot and listened to sad music for hours.

She was not.

Mel had long black hair and little round silver glasses and dark lipstick and many layers of black lace on, and in general looked like someone who maybe someday would get a Sylvia Plath tattoo. 

I had short red hair and a nose ring and looked like someone who might have prepared a monologue from Sylvia Plath’s the Bell Jar for an audition for a film called Teen Witch.  That is something that I did do, and they managed to make the film without me.

I asked her, what do you think you are?  What do your high school friends call you? And she shrugged and said, spooky kid. 

Main Hobbies

We started hanging out right away.  Our main hobbies were: taking acid and seeing the Rocky Horror Picture Show, getting dressed up and taking dramatic portraits of each other in the stairwells at school. Also we drank terrible dorm coffee with ice cream bars melted into them, and Bailey’s irish cream, and then we wondered why we were getting fat.

We were inseparable. We dated briefly until we remembered we were probably primarily straight. We went to New Orleans for spring break and hung out in front of Anne Rice’s house. We went to goth clubs, sat in the back of rooms and complained together, and in general we had fun.

Some Troubles

Our friendship wasn’t perfect. When Tank Girl came out, based on a comic book series I liked a lot, I shaved my head into a Chelsea haircut and wore tutus and combat boots a lot, and felt like I was working an edgy look.

  She took a photograph of the back of my head that demonstrated that my head was a bad one for shaving.  My skull is long and H.R. Geiger-like in the back, and there is a shelf.  I asked her why she hadn’t told me my head was bad and she said she figured it was too late.

Once, she wouldn’t stop puking, and I took her to the emergency room and waited with her for ten hours.

One time, she was my confidant and best friend and and she understood me, and that was all the time.

Another time, we drove to Oklahoma city in the middle of the night because we wanted a box of Boo-Berry cereal, which was not available in Texas, and we ate it as the sun came up and it wasn’t very good.

We were a really good match.  I was a little too tall and she was a little bit short.  I was an emotionally needy extrovert who met everyone and remembered no-one and she was sometimes shy, but she could remember everyone we’d met.

And Later

After college, I moved to Portland, OR to date a boy I’d met in Dallas.  She followed soon after and we took back up together. We were doing exciting things like going to a goth club owned by the Russian mob, dancing to Britpop, and complaining that things weren’t the same as they had been in Dallas, Texas.  What they were was much better.

I became aware that she had found another girl to hang out with named Caroline.  Caroline was also a little too tall and wore high heels all the time and I thought she was loud, even though I am also loud.

We still liked each other.  We still saw each other.  But Caroline was usually there too.  It was stupid to complain that I was jealous.  Why should I be jealous?  I was jealous.

The End, My Friend

Our friendship wasn’t really over until she and my husband had a disagreement about plans that they’d made.  I expected her to pick us up for a DJ gig and she didn’t, but she showed up hours later, drunk and with Caroline, talking in circles about how fun and fucked up their evening had been.  I told her I was tired of her letting me down, and she was furious.

It was her word against his, and I felt like I had to side with my husband.  It was a small thing.  Looking back, it didn’t matter, but everyone was very angry.

Later Still

Two years later, my marriage ended, because my husband was sleeping with another friend of mine, which I didn’t like very much.  That friend in turn was surprised that I didn’t like her anymore.

I went to Melissa’s wedding, to a tall blonde Swede, within a month of my divorce, because I loved her and it was important.  It was a beautiful wedding in an art library, with favors made from antique books and a cake in the shape of a gilded beehive. 

I sat with our friends and cried a little harder, because I wasn’t just happy for her. I was also sorry for myself.  At this point, she had fallen out with Caroline over something.

We are still facebook friends.  We leave each other likes and comments.  I am happy to be to see her happy. She is happily married and doing well.  But I still miss my very best friend.

Chivo!

Posted Posted in acting, costume, dance, goth

I was in a beer ad in Mexico, shot by Chivo, the three-time Oscar winner whose nickname means “The Goat”,  and I played a plus sized, sad ballerina in a vintage playroom.  The photos he posted on Instagram are lovely and paintinglike and I thought I’d put them here.

Highschooooool!

Posted Posted in comedy, goth, Virginia Jones

I was home this week and paging through a stolen copy of my high school’s yearbook and wanted to point out the following image:

Alan Tudyk is pretty cool and is from Firefly and and more importantly, plays a cult leader in two episodes of Strangers with Candy, alongside fellow PSHS alum Jeremy Schwartz, who is also a totally awesome actor person.

Alan Tudyk never hung out with me, but that’s ok.  Hardly anyone did, possibly because I had an earring I made out of a rosary and a lock of my boyfriend Chris’  (last name redacted) hair. Maybe it was because everything I am wearing I got from yard sales, and wore when we took pictures in August in Texas. Perhaps it was because I was identifying with Andie from Pretty in Pink so much that I drove a Kharmann Ghia that was constantly vandalized because I had a KEEP ABORTION LEGAL sticker on it in North Texas.  Who knows?