Last month, I was lucky enough to meet and type for several members of the San Fernando Valley’s Junior Roller Derby team. I loved typing for each of the girls. Kristine, Ophelia’s mom, sent me these pictures.
Several weekends ago, I got the chance to type at WorldFest for the second time (see last year’s “Koala” and “Daughter“). Since I knew what type of crowd flow to expect, I made sure to structure my time in an adaptive way. I set up two chairs instead of just one. I didn’t add people onto a waitlist, or even allow a line to form while typing. I focused exclusively on whoever was sitting next to me, and told anyone who wandered by that they would have to come back when the chair was empty.
I ended up typing only 10 poems the entire day–a drastic difference from my usual 50, 60 poems every two hours. I felt more of an emotional burnout than an intellectual one; living in someone else’s shoes is a lot more fulfilling to me than mechanically churning out as many adjectives as one can think up. I usually try to unearth first impressions out of five minute conversations. This time, interactions would last anywhere from twenty minutes to an hour. Think of the space that kind of time provides; it was amazing to witness stories, memories, thoughts, emotions, connections growing more and more tangible between us.
Today I made a new Skype username: typewriterpoetry. If you’re on Skype, feel free to add me; the little icon above reflects my online status.
I’ll be available for an hour every day. I don’t have a set schedule, and I prefer it that way (as it reflects the spontaneity of when I set up Typewriter Poetry in the physical sense). Like TyPoInPo, it’ll be interesting to see who participates. Whether you’re a fellow blogger or a stranger lurking, hi! Hello! I’m looking forward to Skyping free poetry with you.
The first question people usually ask me after we’ve been talking for a while is “where are you from?”
“I’m from LA,” I always say, though now that I’m in Louisiana I wonder if I should be abbreviating it as “L.A.” in my head.
Whether it’s my clothing, demeanor, accent, or the fact that I use “dude” more than the average person should, everyone always nods their head in immediate understanding when I declare I am from California.
There is an intricate dance I think most of us miss out on. That is the art of delayed gratification–or, in this specific case, letter writing and snail mail.
Yesterday, a wonderful present arrived for me. I wasn’t expecting it, and that certainly added to the initial gasp-shock-love-dream-daze sensation. It’s a sensation I usually associate with making intense eye-contact with a brave, vivid personality. In the haze of it all, my mind struggled to catch up and rearrange the circumstances.
An epiphany: I had received my letter from Remi.
Optimism has been a philosophy that keeps me going when logic just won’t cut it. For all of its pros, looking on the bright side certainly comes with a few cons. For instance, I have decided that I will actively strive not to delude myself with extreme idealism, as I am growing weary of crashing head-first into that solid shape we sometimes refer to as reality.
Artisanal LA is this weekend. Don’t ask me why, but I thought it’d be a swell idea to contribute 1,500 poems for the event gift bags. That’s right. 1,500 original poems. Via typewriter.
Spontaneous gift giving is something I do a lot while traveling. Besides poetry, I’ll also gift books, clothes, and jewelry to new friends I’ve made.
I also receive a variety of gifts. I’ve referenced intangible gifts in the past, the ineffable something people have offered me after we’ve created a poem. I don’t really talk about the physical gifts I’ve been given–with the exception of other poems created for me.
Being amongst other Valley folk is inspirational, especially if you’re at the Canoga Park Art Walk.
No longer held in alleys, we’ve taken over the streets. Artists, vendors, food trucks, and musicians alike are neatly gathered along Owensmouth and Sherman Way as day parts into night. It gives the art walk a festive, open feel rather than a claustrophobic clutter of foot traffic.
It’s good to be home.
I’ve been gone for a month, giving away poems while traveling up California and Oregon with Tyler. With our backpacks, we took to hitchhiking, busing, walking, walking, and of course, more walking.
…Did I mention I brought along my typewriter?
This past Saturday, I typed free poetry while riding the Metro Gold Line.
Last week, I got a chance to meet up with The Little Black Coffee Cup. We only knew each other through Twitter, thanks to our mutual philosophy–”substance over stuff,” as she aptly says. We connected over delicious gourmet coffee, then explored the artsy streets of Culver City.