Friday, January 2, 2015

happy.new.year.

2015. 2015. 2015. Must get used to typing/writing the correct numbers. I always screw that up in January.

Happy New Year! I've never been big on New Year's resolutions; they're fairly easy to break if you try to make lots of changes all at once, and the false ambition at the beginning of the year discourages you from making the changes you need to make at other points during the year. That said, I'd like to address my anxiety more concretely this year--consistent therapy, perhaps. We shall see what campus has to offer. I'd actually like to put more effort into taking care of myself in general. I tend to put a great deal of pressure on myself on a regular basis. A girl deserves a massage every once in a while, though. Right?

Enough about that. Let me instead describe to you the absolutely 100% amazing way I spent my New Year's Eve. First, Gena and I met the lovely miss Jane at Panes for lunch. I haven't seen my intrepid lexicographer friend since she moved to Oakland, so it was delightful to be reunited. After a delicious meal, we trekked downtown to the Museum of Contemporary Art for the exhibit of my dreams: David Bowie Is.

The suggested time for viewing the David Bowie Is exhibit is 1.5 hours. This is a vicious lie. We arrived at 2:30 p.m., and we were there until 5:00, when the museum closed and they kicked us out. I could have spent all day there.

For a moment, let me distance myself from my Bowie obsession and say this: it is one of the best-designed museum exhibits I have ever seen. The rooms begin by following the trajectory of his career, and they continue to do that to a certain extent, but as his career grew more varied and dynamic, so does the exhibit: there are rooms focusing on his androgyny, his film work, his innovation in music videos, his style in the recording studio. The last room focused on his live performances. At the beginning you receive a headset for an audio tour, but instead of pressing numbers for each piece, the audio switches automatically depending on where you're standing. It also syncs up to videos in each room, some of which are complicated and dazzling video collages. The lighting is clever as well, and changes from room to room. I can't imagine the amount of time and money it must have taken to create the exhibit.

Now let my Bowie obsession rush back in full force: ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhitwasthemostbeautifulthingihaveeverseen. So many of his outfits. So. Many. Right there in front of me. So close I could touch them. So. Close. The outfits that he wore. On his body. My spirit animal other self*.

Fact: As I rounded the corner from the section where he had his break with "Space Oddity" into the section where he became Ziggy Stardust, I found myself face to face with the outfit he wore when he performed "Starman" on Top of the Pops, complete with a video of that performance fractured and doubled across mirrored walls. I have watched that video online countless times, and I love it, and at that point I almost started crying. There were tears. In my eyes. I had to cover my face and lean on Gena.

Yep. I'm that girl.

Unfortunately (but understandably), you couldn't take pictures of the exhibit, but here's a picture of me with an extra-large image of his wondrous face outside the gift shop. David Bowie is perfect because he is weird and I am weird and he makes the world beautiful in whimsical, bizarre ways and I want to make the world beautiful in whimsical and bizarre ways, too. 

Okay, as much as it pains me, I am moving on from Bowie--because our New Year's Eve was not nearly over! After a brief rest at Gena's apartment, we got all dressed up in sparkles and Meghan met us and we went to Marty's for a Wisconsin beer or two. From there we headed to Emporium to dance away the rest of 2014 with the band that single-handedly solidified my friendship with Gena, JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound. And oh! did we dance. They started playing at 11:00 p.m., lead our joyous countdown at midnight, and proceeded to play until 1:00 a.m. How serendipitous that they were playing a show while I was here! And on New Year's Eve, no less. It was perfect. I've never actually been out to a bar for New Year's Eve before--I've only ever been to/hosted parties. Ultimately, I think I'd prefer parties with my close friends, but I'm glad I spent it at a bar once, especially at a bar with JC Brooks. They really do consistently put on one of the best live shows I've ever seen. Soul music is good music. (Even David Bowie knows that.)

As you may have noticed, I was on my feet for the majority of the day, and the next day as well. My Fitbit says I took over 14,000 steps both on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. As a result, it is possible that I have a stress fracture in my foot. It's quite painful to walk on at the moment. Hopefully it's just strained. But I don't see this as a downside, my friends. I see this as dedication.

I hope your transition into 2015 was as wonderful as mine. Wishing you all the best of luck and happiness in the year ahead.

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*Tumblr brings up good points about the phrase "spirit animal." Apologies for my white privilege. David Bowie is my patronus.

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