Thursday, December 30, 2010

dormant desire

dormant desire
aka: my life until now...

for as long as i can remember i've made it my mission to do two things- treat people as i'd want to be treated and never, ever be a cliché. the thought of being just like everyone else always terrified me and whenever i tried it it did nothing but make me feel even more unique and different.

my fear of being normal is due in large part to the fact that on paper- i am. since being accidentally conceived on moving day after the birth control was packed, my life has been painfully typical. upon entrance into the world i was cloaked in the most common name of the 80's, "ashley". growing up as a white, middle class girl with blond hair, blue eyes and having a pink 1989 vw cabriolet as my first car, it would have seemed that my barbie-doll life was well on its way to "happily ever after". where many would see a blissful, easy-breezy path towards the future- i saw monotony, complacency and the most dreaded of all- settling.

i've always had a love/hate relationships with plans. part of me yearns for the security of having an agenda and goals; the other part of me shuns anyone/thing that attempts to 'chain me down' and keep me from a freedom filled existence. in 2005 i graduated high school and there was no question- i was going to college for communications, in hopes of someday figuring out what the hell i wanted to do other than talk in public places and prank call people. (which i was very good at, i'll have you know)

it was an interesting place to be, between the certainty of the next four years and the looming uncertainty of what path i would go on after i got that piece of paper. i needed something more concrete. during my first year of college i tried desperately to sink my teeth into something fulfilling, something that would awaken me and set my dreams in motion. class after class; club after club; activity after activity; i found nothing that shook me to my core, i wasn't happy…i had to fix the problem.

there will always be those who doubt your choices on your journey towards ultimate happiness...sometimes that person may even be you. all too often we are scared to do what we want because we've been told "it's not sensible" or "it's not right" or "that's not the way it should be done". in 2006 i broke my parents heart and quit college in pursuit of my dreams.

my dreams were still pretty free-form at that point. ok, well that's a lie- i did know more than anything i wanted to be a stand-up comedian. it was the only dream i'd had since childhood that never went away. i love making people laugh, i enjoy being clever, and i like seemed like at every bend the universe was pushing me towards comedy. i wanted to move out to LA in hopes of making it big. ahh but then the pesky "i refuse to be a cliché" line kept swimming around in my head. "really ash? you think that you are any different from the countless other dreamers who flock to the west? you think an awkward, string bean of a girl would be successful on stage? you need something solid, something need to get a ball rolling on a career path."

after refusing to acknowledge my dream, i pushed onward in my search for happiness and i made a plan. i enrolled in a broadcasting school and quickly fell in love with radio. since childhood i could be found recording my own shows and forcing whoever would listen, to do just that. after being in school for a few weeks, i couldn't wait to get into a real studio. i snuck down the street one day after class and i talked my way into my first internship at a male talk radio station (unbeknownst to my teachers). the president of my school took me under his wing and pulled out all the stops in order to get my feet wet. he urged me to apply for a job with his daughter, which just so happened to be at the discovery channel. i landed the gig as a media librarian at the discovery channel communications HQ. in the year that i had been home after quitting college i had secured a full-time job with benefits, an internship at a popular radio station, and was going to broadcasting was truly blossoming.

during my internship i worked for the morning show which consisted of four main guys, two producers, and a movie reviewer. on day one they pulled me on air to get to know me a little bit better. at the time i had just turned 19 and i was only recently comfortable discussing my sexuality publicly. it wasn't long before i was known as the 'hot-bisexual-intern' to listeners (i came out as a lesbian a year later), which was a regrettable way of confirming to my mother (a station listener as well) that i wasn't kidding when i said i wasn't straight. sorry mom!

i gobbled up any job i could around the station. from setting up events to recording commercials to escorting strippers to the greenroom…i did it all and happily so. i loved my time as an intern but as soon as it began the ride was over. a day prior to my internship being complete i was offered a position at the station, which i took (to replace the job i had recently left at the discovery channel) and staid there for another year and a half.

people are incredibly dismissive of radio due to the FCC manhandling all creative forces at play on air. many also complain that radio stations play a selection of music that's repetitive and often way too mainstream. what few outside of the radio world know is that terrestrial radio has the potential to be entertaining, interactive, enlightening, and something really magical. i will never stop believing in radio- ever, i only hope that the FCC someday recognizes the err of their ways and adopts the mantra from our own constitution- "freedom of the press".

finding a sense of belonging in the radio community, i pushed forward on the airwaves. i left the unpredictable world of male talk radio for a more straight laced spot on the dial- news stations. with all the shtick and sexually themed conversations i'd been a part of in the past, i welcomed the complete 180 of being in a news room reporting on serious events. i accepted a job working weekends as a traffic reporter and in a matter of months i had moved into a full time spot during the weekdays. a year after my first shift on air, i was offered a position on TV as the afternoon traffic girl- at 21, i couldn't have felt more accomplished.

for the past three and a half years i've dutifully reported the traffic day after day in the nations capital. it doesn't exactly get me the ladies but i'm sincerely fascinated with the ebb and flow of cars (traffic nerd 2 da MAXX). a ride with me is often sprinkled with little known reasoning behind major work zones, or fun stories of major accidents. nothing brings me as much joy as discussing the gruesome tales i've witnessed/reported on throughout the years...unfortunately, this isn't a shared love and more often then not people think i'm morbid or weird for finding my reports on daily death so fascinating.

that itch that prompted me to leave college is flaring up again in a major way. in recent months work has demanded nearly all of my time. i don't say that in the way that most people do when they are mindlessly complaining about their job- i say it in the most honest way possible. while i've gone to a social gathering here and there, since the end of the summer i've been swallowed socially by my job. sitting in it- driving through it- reporting on it- or trying to avoid it; traffic is all i can see. in years past, complete career saturation has been a welcomed occurrence; i like loving my job and don't mind being consumed with it. but the moon is shifting and the tides are changing in my little world, i'm gaining the confidence needed to reach out and follow the stars that live in my heart.

i know dreams won't stay asleep forever...i just hope i wake up in enough time to chase mine down.

Friday, November 26, 2010

usurp the drama queen: period

usurp the drama queen:

drama; a word that in my younger life evoked images of stage productions and movie stars, now is forever marred by the maxed out emotions of petty people. with the rate at which people complain about it you would think that drama was an unavoidable predator, who lurks in the shadows waiting to pounce on kind-hearted individuals.

upon first meeting new friends i pay close attention to their word choices. if the phrase, "i hate drama" tumbles out of their mouth (or the less true statement of "i'm totally drama-free") i'm sure to take note. not because i think i've stumbled across the one person who has no issues whatsoever in life but because they are probably full of shit and live for dramatic encounters.

i don't generally like to base my theories off of the assumption that people are liars but some of the most troublesome, disruptive personalities i've met also claimed to hate drama. therefore, my theory is rooted in truth (even if that truth is little more than my life experiences).

it would come as a shock to no one to learn that there is a portion of people who not only enjoy drama but seem thrive within its grasp. these people are commonly referred to as drama queens. they aren't always as attractive as mean girls would have us believe (something tells me i could have handled high school with a lot more grace where it lindsay lohan and her massive mammaries telling me i was a freak of nature but that's neither here nor there) my mother always told me to avoid these types of folks and keep my guard up around them. being the asshole child i was, i refused to believe any lesson that i hadn't learned in the most challenging way possible. i chose to try and tame the beast.

my thinking had always been if there are folks out there who do nothing but stir up drama, then it's possible for the exact opposite to exist. i learned very quickly that it was too idealistic of me to believe that one person could put out all the fires another had set.

negativity can sometimes spread faster than positivity. when negative vibes begin move around in hateful actions and gossip people start to feed off of it. to a certain extent we begin to enable each other, we tell each other it's ok to be nasty.

why? why would we encourage each other to be bitches and assholes? who's idea was it to think that being disrespectful, condescending, or in any way that you yourself would not like done to you, was any way to treat any woman (or anyone in the LGBT community or anyone ANYWHERE)? staying with just women however, i don't think its right to support our friends hurting other people, no matter who that is. jaded, hurt, alone, angry- we've all been there, but why inflict that on another person? why keep that cycle going? that goes against every grain of my being…i, for one, am standing up-

if you gain anything from this piece, i hope it is this- we are meant to lift each other up, never tear each other down. everyone is someone else; every body has different essence and soul; we are all worthy of both giving and receiving respect. in order for you to become the unicorn who storms the castle to usurp the drama queen and end her rude reign of tyranny you must be the period. someone has to end the cycle of drama. even if your period is scratched out by a later editor who continues to add more crap as a run-on sentence to whom which doesn't make sense but you have to end it sometime; a period always has to come.

unless there is an ellipse… you see, i've yet to find a person who truly leads a "drama-free life". the nature of life is that its unpredictable and at times tumultuous. we've been trained to think that all drama is bad- that it is something to be feared or hated or used as a way to gain power, but that's not true. drama can be (and is) a very beautiful, essential part of life. my only sister; my best friend. my body with bigger boobs and more interesting tattoos, is getting married in a few weeks. a freshly rattled snow globe would best describe the flurry of drama that has surrounded this one day. it's crazy to me but in an inexplicable way. i love her so much and i love them together, i wouldn't trade this drama for anything.

good, bad, essential or otherwise drama happens. we are all on this short ride together, doesn't it just feel right to help over hurt? everyone has lead a life up until the point you met them..we all are equals. drama queens around the world (and i do mean actual queens in some cases)? be wary, for someone somewhere read my message. that sour, slithering, saucy sentence you've been spitting? it's going to end…
soon…know why?
i'm on my period-

Monday, November 8, 2010

optical illusions

optical illusions
what you see isn't what you get

not a single soul sees the world exactly as i see it. i'm not special, or unique, or on a lot of hallucinogenic drugs...i'm just blind without some sort of corrective lenses. when strangers pluck the glasses off my face and slip them in front of their eyes squeals of, "oh my god- you weren't kidding! i feel like i'm on drugs!" are often heard.

unfortunately for me, i'm blind enough to wear comically thick glasses but not blind enough to own a seeing eye dog...
nor am i actually blind enough to legally classify myself as "blind" (a fact found out when i attempted to apply for a scholarship for the visually impaired in high school and was promptly denied on account of the fact that i can see.)

being acutely aware of my visual shortcomings, i became intrigued early in life with differences in perception. where my eyes failed, my mind filled in the blanks. that spawned a lifelong fascination with optical illusions. the first time i saw the work of m.c. escher my worldview expanded. it was as if he opened the door and gave me permission to see what wasn't apparent outright. in his work what is- isn't...a staircase that leads to more of the same? hands drawing themselves? triangles that transform birds?

the mind is a gnarled, unexplainable labyrinth that houses an endless array of possibilities and paths. we are so quick to limit ourselves to believing in only the tangible, the sensible, and the rational that we forget how beautiful the unreal can be.

not a single soul sees the world exactly as i see it. i'm not special, or unique, or on a lot of hallucinogenic drugs...i'm just open to the beauty of life's optical illusions.

Friday, November 5, 2010

lost and found lesbifriend

lost and found lesbifriend
don't call it a comeback

lesbifriends was born out of a particularly challenging time in my life. directionless, emotionally drained, and just plain lost; my blog began as an escape from my mind. by focusing on other thoughts; by writing about positive things; by simply having an outlet- i found a great deal of peace. through this recent depressive lull in my life however, i no longer found that peace post after post.

my blog is a reflection of who i am. i turn to it to unload, to connect and ultimately find some sanity. while i don't like being explicitly personal on my blog, i do make it a point to always speak honestly of my feelings. this stems from my firm belief that were we all honest with our emotions, we'd find we are all a lot more alike than not (and as an awkward, unique, string bean of a lady- that is a very comforting thought.)

shutting down emotionally is not uncommon for me but to stop writing...well, that was a new one.

i didn't lose my passion for writing- i was still filling up journals and scribbling notes everywhere but nothing expressed all i truly wanted to unleash. i didn't want to turn my blog into what my head had become... something with a nasty, negative, mean voice. the only way i could do this while still posting new material was to censor myself. in doing that i was also shutting down my lone outlet.

it was only natural for me to want to write out my frustrations but having a life that is entwined with so many- i felt it would quickly become a gossip blog or a forum to bash situations that i found fucked up. i wanted to allow my feelings to flow out. i wanted to call people out on terrible actions. i wanted to let people know that my social silence wasn't indicative of my complacency but rather was my attempt to 'rise above'. i wanted to tell the world how alone and betrayed i was. try as i might, 'posting through the pain' for the past few months didn't bring me much comfort. i was still sad and not writing about ALL that was swirling around in my head.

it was my father's voice from long ago that finally brought me the stillness i so desperately needed. in elementary school, i remember working on my math homework with him one night. the problem had to do with fractions and it was not clicking in my little head. i'd been working on it for what seemed like hours and was still at a complete standstill. i became increasingly more agitated until i finally broke down in tears and demanded he tell me the answer. he didn't... he never would give me the answers... but he did tell me that i needed to take a step back- breathe for a moment- then approach the problem with fresh eyes.

i never did figure out the answer to the question (fuck fractions) but i did carry his message with me from then on. meditation, self-reflection and a fresh world view can make all the difference. after a dark and difficult summer, my days are sunny once again. does that mean life is a double rainbow (all the way)? certainly not. but i have 'refreshed my home-screen' if you will, and i'm looking at life through new, bright, hopeful eyes.

it feels good to be back my lesbi-friends.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

directionless dreamer

directionless dreamer
finding inspiration in my bff jill
during my freshmen year of high school, i met a woman who would change my life forever. it was several weeks prior to the start of school and the summer sun was still freckling my skin as i prepared for tryouts. with my braces freshly off and my nearly blind eyes now corrected by contacts, i walked into cheerleading tryouts confidently. sure- i had no actual experience, nor did i have a passion for cheering...but i liked smiling and waving my arms around wildly, so it seemed an appropriate fit.

i learned very quickly that i didn't fit in with the rest of the girls trying out. still three years away from puberty, my body was anything but womanly. my thighs were soft and rounder than the other girls. my hair was long and pulled back with no discernible style. as more girls walked in my confidence faded. they were mesmerizingly beautiful and had been cheering for years, there was no way i could be part of this elite club- i was too awkward and weird...then she walked in.

jill beth hannes was an ivory skinned, strikingly beautiful 14 year old. her face, like her eyes, were peppered with freckles. standing still she was the definition of grace and pose. walking, i soon found out, was another story. jill owned two, very narrow, extremely flat feet. this made balance a challenge for her. she came stumbling into tryouts and my life, narrowly missing a face plant on the cafeteria floor. it was clear to me that this gangily, stumbling creature would be my greatest friend.

we both made the squad and from then on did everything together. cheerleading, theater, yearbook, stealing shopping carts/repainting them/riding them around the neighborhood; we took high school by storm. my awkwardness and anxious nature had finally found their counterpart. she made me feel closer to normal (which in those crucial years, is very much needed).

after high school jill moved to san francisco to follow her dreams of becoming a photographer for vogue. upon finishing school she sold nearly all she owned and bought a one way ticket to new york city. i remember her telling me that all of her internships had fallen through just before she officially moved into the big apple. as someone who thrives on the stability of set plans, i was very concerned for her. "so, you don't have a job or any internships? aren't you scared? how will you survive?"

the truth is she was probably scared shittless but she gave herself no option but success. with her back against the wall she was relentless in her search for work. several months after her move she now has a job and two internships, one of which with the famed nylon magazine. jill continues to climb the ladder of success and will no doubt rise to the heights she's been dreaming of all her life.

i can't help but be a bit jealous- not of her successes, but of how clearly she sees her dreams. i yearn for that clarity. while i've been successful in my current line of work, i feel as if i'm marching tirelessly on a path with no end in sight. i have no definitive end goal and it's driving me crazy. i have nothing worth selling all i own in pursuit of.

i've tried to compile lists of my strengths, as well as things that bring me happiness in hopes of figuring out where it is i should steer my ship. but s.s.ashley is still riding the waves of a path i set out on years ago. and while i'm closer than ever to figuring out what i want out of life, all this introspection is starting to drive me crazy.

with time i'm certain i'll figure it out...that's how things generally happen, right? i've always felt like my purpose was to connect with the disconnected and to make people smile. someday i'll find a job that utilizes all of my strengths and talents. i just wish i knew what that job was so i could drop everything in pursuit of it. all i can do now is continue to move forward in work and life and hope that i find my dreams along the way.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

you can pity the fool

you can pity the fool
but don't pity the lonely
everyday millions of people classify themselves as lonely. some are launched into loneliness by way of betrayal, mistrust, and abandonment. others cling to it in attempts to become a stronger individual; proving no one is needed for their survival.

being alone has been vilified for years. it should come as no shock that so many regard it as a depressive pit of despair- we've been trained to think this way. it's commonly understood that the crazy cat lady lives alone and speaks to no one but felines. everyone knows the man seated alone at the diner must be waiting for someone to join him- he couldn't possibly be solo by choice.

somehow throughout time we've come to believe that sadness and loneliness go hand in hand; that no one could possibly want to be alone- let alone thrive when left to their own devices.

feeling alone and being alone are two different animals. truly being alone is something i've never been. lest it be family, partners, friends, coworkers, or friendly-faced strangers; i've always found something worth holding onto in other people. all my life, i've clung hopelessly to the belief that people are inherently good. it's a challenge to hold onto that mentality when those who surround you do things that (for lack of a more eloquent wording) make you sad but if you believe that everyone is rooted in evil...what does that make you?

the line, "you are the company you keep" continues to swirl around in my head and i can't help but shout back, "WE ARE ALL INDIVIDUALS, NOT CLONED SHEEP!" i've witnessed my friends do things i couldn't fathom doing. in turn, i'm sure they have seen me conduct myself in a manner they find foreign and bizarre. i know that the world is pretty fucked up, but i dismiss that as my mantra and try focus on the good.

alone is a tough title to keep while still remaining positive about the world around you. when you remove yourself from society, every one and thing has no choice but to live up to all of your expectations. how can anyone prove you wrong and encourage you to trust again when you won't allow them in? how could anything be more than you imagine when you don't give it the chance to?

the most depressing thing i heard this summer came out of the mouth of someone who was very close to me at the time. she was going through a rough breakup and was beginning to loose faith in humanity. with tear filled eyes she turned to me and said, "i know- i'll just sleep with her ex! that will show her!"

this sweet, kind girl wanted to destroy another emotionally to justify the pain she was in. i understand hurt- we all understand being betrayed but when did this mentality of 'getting people back' become king? i've been driven to loneliness by none other than myself, but the actions of peers have forced me to question my return. do i want to come back to a world that encourages us to hurt each other when we feel wronged?

the only thing i do know for certain is that i can only focus on my own actions. judging others for living in a manner that i deem unfit is no better than the bigots who flick off my car for my HRC sticker. it boils down to a simple difference of opinion. hate can be hidden in many forms, including that of 'concern for others'.

i can now admit that negativity and anger have clouded my vision for far too long this summer. while i'm still baffled by the behaviors i witness, i'm also ready to bat away the cobwebs and return to life. i can either live in the snowglobe-dream-world i've constructed for myself or i can engage with real life and take it as it comes.

being alone can be restorative and cleansing. my self-ostracization has brought me closer to myself and given me a greater understanding of how people interact with each other. to my lonely friends out there- remember, through this painfully connected world no one is ever truly alone. as long as you still have the strength to lift up your hand...someone will be there to hold it and even if no one is there, hope isn't lost. you are stronger than you could ever dream. you don't require anyone in order to become who you will be. we all have the ability to both rise and fall, it's up to you alone to choose what path you take.

pride in the sky

pride in the sky
the rooftop in rockville

this weekend is a big one in the lesbiworld around the dc metropolitan area. first you have the annual phasefest, hosted by phase one which starts this evening and lasts throughout the weekend. (get more infomation regarding phasefest here) if bands and bars aren't your thing you can hop on down to richmond, virginia for virginia pride. (get more info here)

but what about my maryland sisters? richmond is a haul for even viriginians and sometimes DC can be a daunting drive for our neighbors to the north. well fear not friends, all hope is not lost! there is an up and coming event that is steadily gaining speed in montgomery county. la tasca is a spanish restaurant and bar in rockville, maryland. they have several different locations peppered thoughout DC/VA/MD that host such events as live flamenco shows, dancing lessons, and the occational free sangria and tapas. at their rockville location this weekend they are hosting the rooftop party, pride in the sky.

on saturday from 8pm-1am every ones favorite, DJ rosie (of Bare parties at Cobalt) will be spinning. they offer a happy hour from 8-9pm with $3 beers, sangria, wine and rail drinks. the drag show goes on at midnight but the view from the roof is free all night.

it's also worth noting that several of my close friends are going to be bartending the event. now i say this with as much depth as possible, but they are aesthetically pleasing in every way and thus you should go see them and shower them with your hard earned cash. they even possess charming personalities to match their beauty; all of 'em are worth your tips and good times.

i hope where ever you land this weekend, you have a magical time and are surrounded by warm, loving people.

pride in the sky @ the rooftop in rockville
155 gibbs st., suite 305
rockville, md 20850
saturday 8pm-1am 21+ w ID
$5 cover until 10pm $7 after

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

it's that time of the month!

it's that time of the month!
bridget mcmanus presents: that time of the month

just in case you missed the 22 minutes of perfection that aired on LOGO last tuesday, here it is for your viewing pleasure...

if you want to be a part of the show and love ladies checkout the guidelines for submissions here or you can email me at

Thursday, September 16, 2010

vaginas: natures fortune cookie

natures fortune cookie

every vagina is different. generally i'd follow that statement with "...and all are beautiful" but as my gynecologist delicately pointed out one visit, "there is nothing beautiful about open sores and communicable diseases...healthy vaginas are beautiful." i suppose being in a profession where on any given day you could find yourself forearm deep in the herpes-speckled snatch of a stranger, it's easy to see how one might lose sight of the specialness of vagina's and become jaded.

much like a fortune cookie, vagina's hide life lessons deep inside. when i was seven a vagina taught me that life is unpredictable and oft times uglier than we envision. even at that tender age, i came to the all-too-adult notion that the universe has some fucked up ways of exposing us to it's truths. very few moments in my childhood do i remember as vividly as my first encounter with another woman's genitals...please note: i do not say this with any sense of pride.

it was my first sleepover birthday party hosted by none other than the popular girls of elementary school. i couldn't contain my joy. new house, new smell, new experiences; it was going to be a great night, all i had to do was not be weird.

clearly, i was destined for failure.

as the girls huddled around a table full of glitter, markers, pens and paper, my nose pulled me elsewhere. in my own little world on the floor of the laundry room, i crawled around sniffing everything. instead of leading to a life of coke binges and huffing paint, i hoped that my keen sniffer would simply lead me to the smell source. after all, i was investigating a suspicious scent (which, to be honest wasn't as suspicious as it was just shitty). the other girls undoubtedly got a whiff but they lacked my nancy-drew-like curiosity for the unexplained and chose to color bears and flowers instead.

unbeknownst to me, slinking around an unfamiliar house and rummaging through boxes of christmas decorations is frowned upon- it might even cause one to never be invited back to said house. moments before i lifted a towel off what i would later find out was a dog cage (with one very ill, shit-covered dog inside) a dainty hand of shocking strength pulled me up off the floor and ushered me back to the party.

"wouldn't you rather be drawing poinsettias like the rest of the girls?" the birthday girl's mother asked in a tone that said, "seriously you little snoop- sit, color and stay outta my shit." she went on to explain how the dog was dying and i shouldn't bother him. her honesty was refreshing but did result in a horrified expression on my cherubic face. at the sight of this her story quickly changed to 'the dog ate chocolate, leave him alone' and my smile sheepishly returned.

her hair was wound tightly around rollers and her nightgown wreaked of zest. her blood red nails coupled with the bright blue veins bulging from her hands had me all but convinced that she was going to turn us all into rats later (a la witches) but after feeding us poisionless chinese food i figured we were in the clear.

the night began to wind down and the slumber bags were unrolled. as i wiggled my way deep inside the cocoon of cotton and polyester i felt satisfied. i had managed to survive the party being only borderline bizarre with one, lone witness- my friend's mother.

the line between being conscious and drifting into the REM cycle was finally beginning to blur when a loud sound awoke me. it was a person coming down the stairs. terrified that someone was breaking in, i shut my eyes as tight as i could and waited for them to leave.

that would have been a fine plan, had the stranger left promptly and not begun to walk around amongst the sleeping pre-teens. i could feel the footsteps march closer towards my beloved garfield sleeping bag until finally, the steps stopped. peeking out between the web woven by sleep, i could make out that this stranger was standing above me- a foot at each of my ears. now in legitimate fear for my life, my seven year old eyes opened as wide as they could to see my attacker and hopefully stave off death.

that's when it happened.

turns out my 'attacker' was also my friend's mother who had popped back in to check on us. another fun turn of events was my friend's mother also appreciates the ease and comfort of pantie-less living. it's like that moment when you catch yourself staring into the sun. reason tells you that it's likely burning your retina and you should stop but some strange mixture of curiosity and self-loathing prevents you from doing that. her vagina stared back at me and gave me a sideways smile.

it was the only time i've ever been horrified upon the sight of another womans genitals. quite frankly, it's shocking i'm gay having such a traumatizing experience as my first vagina spotting. the entire ordeal proved to be a worthwhile one, for i did learn a valuable lesson that cold (but not cold enough for underwear) winter night. metaphorically or otherwise, we all are blinded by unpleasant truths in life. it might be uncomfortable or painful momentarily but in the long run- it's just life, it's just a vagina.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

We hear you now PSA

We hear you now PSA
apacolyptic productions

We hear you now:
Public Service Announcment

ashley, apacolyptic productions

Monday, September 13, 2010

more colorful

more colorful
a thought
nbc's new fall slogan of "more colorful" television leaves me with more questions than answers. some might be prompted to glue themselves to the edgier, funnier, undoubtedly life changing programming they are set to unveil but others, like myself, ask simply "what color nbc?"

at first i thought, "it's a racial nod. 'colorful' oh i get it!" but the greater portion of propaganda with the 'more colorful' slogan on it has a slew of white actors in their 30s. it's clear the color implied wasn't the color of ones skin. sure, a few minorities slipped into some photo opts, but not enough to constitute a new ad campaign.

now admittedly, i don't watch tv with any sense of regularity and when i do catch a show that everyone is talking about i've more than likely witnessed it online. i have an acute awareness of the goings-on in the media world due to my job. work forces me to swallow commercial copy daily.

after reading (over and over and over again) a commercial for nbc the truth became all too clear. "nbc's new daytime lineup features: the nate berkus show, the ellen degeneres show and the real housewives! everyday is full of color on nbc." as the words tumbled out of my mouth an epiphany was bubbling up within me- their advertising department's intention wasn't rooted in race, but in sexuality!

my mother always accuses 'the gays' of being in your face and down your throat with their orientation. (so easily she forgets all the times that i personally have made efforts to not bring up my sexuality because it offends others...but i digress). i couldn't agree with her more in some cases, but more often than not it's only considered 'in your face' because it's not been an open topic in the past.

instead of vilifying nbc for not showing more minorities, we should thank them for placing our delicate community smack dab in the center of the dinner table. fresh on the heels of gay marriage, nbc becomes gayer than ever with their obvious nod to the homosexuals. with their "more colorful" take on television, nbc parks two homo-hosts next to each's official world- the gays are taking over the media.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

fecal matter face

and that time of the month

when i emerged from my mother's lifehole 23 short years ago, i was covered in an adorable mixture of amniotic fluids, blood, and human fecal matter. not having ever experienced childbirth, it's easy for me to consider being a literal shithead upon delivery disgusting- vomit inducing even. the thought of a pristine newborn looking like a jackson pollock in various shades of brown reminds me that no one is perfect. whenever i accomplish something noteworthy in my life- something that might cause me to shout from the rooftops, i remind myself of one simple were born a warrior but your warpaint was shit- stay humble e cloi-face.

being humble isn't always easy when you are a good looking, ferociously smart young woman with a dazzling smile. but if you were a lady in your early twenties with gangly limbs and a borderline unhealthy love of dinosaurs, humility is something that comes naturally to you. it's hard to be cocky when you own both a fanny pack and a pt cruiser.

the perks of poo comes in the form of life lessons. i've learned it might give me pink eye if it finds its way in/around my optical area but no shit can't squelch my dreams. i've never had issue with taking pride in my work but i have always been quick to downplay my successes in attempts to stay grounded.
(i fear resting on past achievements causes people to settle...i never want to settle.) i've made no bones about the past several months having been less than stellar. throughout the summer i assured myself that something spectacular was coming my way- i just had to muddle through waist deep shit to get there.

now it's rare that i toot my own horn but BEEP BEEP mo'fucks! i can't keep this to myself any longer! i sat on this information for a little bit- mostly because i had a hard time believing it was real- but a dream has come true in my world and i'm one step closer to finding the cure for aids.

ok- half of that statement isn't true but i did land a new internship. while i doubt it will put me on the path to curing aids, it is the gayest, most magical moment in my life to date. imagine witnessing a unicorn mount a vespa and drive on a rainbow colored road, all whilst wearing a top hat and handlebar mustache... THAT is how i feel and have felt since the news came down the line.

some of you don't enjoy reading and find lots of words in a small font boring. you probably didn't even actually read to this point you just skimmed for a paragraph break..for you (and loyal readers alike)

i got an internship with the new show, bridget mcmanus presents: that time of the month
which in turn means, bridget mcmanus is aware of my existence.
the same woman who pillow fought with lena headey and is married to karman kregloe, emails me.
the show airs on LOGO and, hello gay meccas!
AND my name will appear as associate producer!
i'm sorry- i still have a hard time digesting the whole thing.

that time of the month, showcases the film and video work of lesbian and bisexual women. i owe yourdailylesbianmoment author, arlan, a giant thank you. if it weren't for her, my little email would never have been taken seriously by bridget, let alone found it's way to her inbox. she has been a tremendous inspiration and friend to me throughout my time in the blogosphere and posts photos/videos of incredibly attractive (generally half naked) women...thank you arlan- for everything.

my summer into fall transition has been an exciting one, to say the least. one might even go so far as to say that i couldn't ask for anything more...but i will. it's a modest request, nothing that requires too much from you. i ask simply that next tuesday morning come 4am EST, you park yourself in front of a tv, turn on LOGO and watch: bridget mcmanus presents- that time of the month! then it's required that you laugh hysterically and tell all your friends about this delightful, new, lesbifriend-approved show!

storms of shit are worth weathering. while in the midst of one it's not uncommon to wish that life could go back to the way it was before. the smell, the feel, the overall quality of life during shitty times is just that- shitty. but we all know storms don't last and nothing is as it was before. life is all about progress, positivity and learning to dance with shit on your face.

bridget mcmanus presents:
that time of the month
september 14th, 2010
4am est on LOGO

(if you are interested in being featured on the show and meet the requirements, don't hesitate to e-mail me: and i will pass your work onto bridget...i can't wait to see what you ladies are working on!)

Monday, September 6, 2010

rough and tumble

rough and tumble lesbians
who are they?!

rough and tumble lesbians:
a new breed of mainstream lesbian; a monster mash-up of all your favorite stereotypical lesbian roles:
two parts dyke + one part femme + a pinch of 'yo-boy' + a whole bunch of dyke swagger

wardrobe consists mainly of:
board shorts
brightly colored skater shoes
flat-billed hats (only worn slightly cocked to the side)
thin, mildly form fitting, cotton t-shirts (preferably v-neck)

these girls aren't afraid to jump back and forth across the line between femme and dyke but they feel most at home in a pair of mesh shorts and a wife beater. with a wardrobe that would leave justin bieber speechless, rough and tumble lesbians offer more than the simple style of a preteen boy. to their outfits they bring color- neon to be exact. those who suffer from seizures should look elsewhere for a lover because these ladies love bold punches from the visual spectrum. from bright splashes on shoelaces to multicolored neon hats, everything is worthy of a kiss of color.

rough and tumble lesbians differ from your everyday dyke in two major areas- hair and makeup. dykes are known for their shorter, often gender-neutral haircuts. brash and bold in their hair stylings, the dykes love shaving their heads (or more typical of your modern lesbian- shaving half or simply the square above the ear) sometimes they even spice it up to the point that they shave some speed stripes in there! conversely, rough and tumble girls generally roll with long, straightened hair.

the myth that lesbians don't wear makeup couldn't be disproved more by our rough and tumble friends. with a flick of an eyeliner and a coat or two of mascara, these ladies aren't exactly breaking the bank at MAC. it might not be on par with drag queens but they do wear make-up, albeit a little.

be on the lookout for this new lesbian breed on the rise...

you should get naked...

you should get naked...
and other fun suggestions i passed on this weekend

this weekend, against my better judgment, i forced some friends to join me in a directionless adventure. our mission was simple: go to arlington to deliver a birthday present to a jordana-brewster-look-alike. being road-savvy, i thought i'd be in the clear leaving the GPS at home and following my remembered way into the beer-soaked streets of clarendon. that was a great thought, however i forgot to include in that line of thinking that i don't actually go bar hopping in arlington, nor do i have any idea where the bar in question was...hilarity ensues.

three ladies, collectively dressed to kill, slipped into my pt cruiser and within moments we were on our way. as a plan enthusiast i found it odd how excited i was to arrive at a location that kept changing as we drove. first one bar- then the one across the street- now the one that's catty corner to the metro station...the texts poured in from the jordana-brewster-look-alike. every location given was within the same block or two and that fact kept my nerves at bay.

our main goal was delivery of the birthday present. the jordana-brewster-look-alike had been out of the country all summer and this was my first chance to really wow her. in fact, it was my first time actually meeting her face to face. no pressure. after a 15 minute drive into arlington turned into a 45 minute tour of arlington we finally arrived at our destination.

it's worth mentioning that the bar we were willingly seeking out was a straight one. in the past, i've had some challenging experiences in hetero clubs and bars but i'm trying to let go of my 'straight-club-hatin' ways. well- more honestly, this chick is a friggin' jordana-brewster-look-alike!! i would have stopped by anywhere to ensure she got her birthday hug.

after elbowing our way through the entrance we were finally in sight of the dance floor. it was late- late enough that 80% of those dancing had sweat stains and a complete lack of basic motor skills. if i couldn't feel my ass cheeks the night would have been delightful. alas, my ass is a sensitive little sucker and i felt all of the man bulges and giant lady shoulder bags as they shimmied by. the dance floor was packed so we inched our way to the bar. it proved to provide little relief from the crowd but the promise of holding something in my hand was a comforting thought.

those of you who aren't excessive drinkers understand my uneasiness when my hands are empty while standing bar-side. everyone sees my paws without a drip drop between them and thinks, "she needs a drink." who's to blame them for jumping to those conclusions? i'm in a's pretty clear that the intention of an establishment such as that is to drink. to help myself assimilate into the bar scene, i've adopted the habit of always holding a corona light in my hand- empty or full, in my hand it stays.

try as i might to avoid the awkward it finds fun new ways to weave itself into my life. in attempts to play it cool, i told my friends we should stand stationary and wait for the jordana-brewster-look-alike to come around our way. this was a good call on two counts; one- we wouldn't have to bulldoze our way through a crowd and risk loosing each other, two- i wouldn't throw up on the short girls heads and have a panic attack while looking for my friend...WIN WIN!

i saw her gracefully bounce down the steps, smiling and saying hi to people along the way. "guys! i found her! but i'll just wait until she wonders this way...i don't actually want hunt her down." sure enough, within 10 minutes a hand cupped my back and a woman politely asked me if she could squeeze by. in true rico suave form i began smiling uncontrollably and saying bizarre, already established things.

why when i'm nervous i slip into stating facts is still a mystery to me. "ahh! there you are!""it's your birthday." in case she wasn't aware, never mind all of her friends standing behind her tossing 'birthday shots' her way OR the fact that she invited me to her birthday party. "this place is packed." she would have undoubtedly been lost without my assertions. thankfully i alerted her to her own location.

fake-jordana-brewster, my friends and i chatted for a little while longer until our convo was disrupted by two polo-clad fellas. "do you think we are douchebags?!" they asked as the sweat and booze trickled out of their pores. i wouldn't normally judge strangers so harshly but the tenacity of these two was a bit much for me. maybe it was the one corona light talking but i gave 'em some sass.

engaging with these drunk strangers wasn't the best move i've made recently. rather than causing them to scatter, my unparalleled wit (or the fact that we were rejecting them) kept them nestled close to our circle of five.

i began rattling off the reasons why drunk people can be douchebags and one guy went on the attack. he grabbed my scarf, "you know it's not winter. why are you wearing this scarf? it's silly."

at a lesbian bar, i would have been showered with compliments on the classic black kerchief tied round my neck. i told my inebriated new friend that i was on the pulse of fashion and he didn't understand. indeed he didn't- he then went into a tirade on how 'you don't need clothes to be beautiful'. "that scarf isn't you. those clothes don't make you beautiful- you make you beautiful..."

as much as i wanted to hear him out and accept his compliments (let's face it- we can all use a pick-me-up), his bloodshot eyes and the faint smell of vomit reminded me that he was wasted. the jordana-brewster-look-alike rushed to my defense. grabbing my scarf she shouted, "do you know what this means? it means her dick is bigger than yours."

for a split second i'm pretty sure he thought i was a M2F trans but then i clarified,"i'm aware of the fact that you are trying to be philosophical but all you are really saying is that we should all be naked. that's a really neat thought sir, but you are barking up the wrong tree- i'm gay."

being a mature adult he then called me a douchebag and gave me a firm scowl. i went on to remind him that any number of the ladies dancing around would gladly service him later; that our disinterest in dick was no slight to him but the damage was done, his ego crushed for the moment.

it would be easy to look back on the night and remember nothing but the adventure-filled drive and the 15 minutes spent giving the fake-jordana-brewster her birthday present. but where's the fun in denying all of the fun pickles that life puts us in?

rolling with the punches this weekend was something i'm proud to say i did with relative ease. stepping out of my comfort zone both physically and emotionally was a tough pill to swallow but with friends as smooth and thirst-quenching as mine, it was no sweat...aside from those drenched in it at the bar.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

epic high fives

epic high fives
a thought to pick you up

hating thursday simply because it's not friday is no way to muddle through the week. every day should be praised (except mondays- they always suck). daily we all should try and focus on the threads of hope, humanity, and hilarity.

if you are more of a pessimist and find my unusually chipper demeanor annoying- you're an ass, lighten up sunshine. but even the negative nancy's of the world could use a smile. who doesn't enjoy smiling? (that's a stupid question. sometimes smiles, particularly from strangers, are unnerving. picture this- elderly man in loose fitting sweatpants and a beater looks at you from across the bus. his smile stretches from ear to ear. after returning the smile you note both his hands are down his pants- creepy right? that was of no relevance...i'm sorry) point being- we all can use some hints on how to bring more happiness into our worlds.

today's hint?
high fives, man.

nothing quite compares to the joy one gets after a solid clap of the perfect high five. after locking eyes, i square up with my partner and while facing each other, our shoulders align. just prior to the approach my arm is fashionably draped over the corresponding shoulder. another breath won't enter my lungs until the one across from me mirrors my sassy stance. some might jump from this point directly into the arch just before the high five. those who do that are fucking high fivin' amateurs.

the one, lone key in the making of a perfect high five is the momentary glance preceding the high five itself. it's all about checking out those 'bows. often called 'the most awkward part of the body aside from knees' or 'wenis', the elbow holds all the cards. one fleeting glance in tandem with your high-fiving-friend ensures that you will get the perfect clap- every time.

after arching back and hurling my heart and soul into my approach- it happened. *CLAP* that sound; a thunderous, meaty, slap of skin. that feeling; epic, rad, perfection. that connection- open palm, open heart. no debate necessary- high fives can't be beat.

if you find yourself feeling a little bit low today, i remind you to smile and find joy in this moment by ramming your hand into anothers. with one solitary slap you can bring an explosion of bright light into your world. if you are too lost in the darkness and feel that no one is around you, fear not- high fives are always possible, no matter how deep the depression. as long as you have two mitts at your disposal (even if the both belong to you), you've got yourself some magic.

up high- down low.
happy day- fo' sho.

Monday, August 30, 2010


let's be goddesses. lesbifriends

in the gay world there are a lot of gray areas. there is an ever increasing number of labels that, while their intention is to make everyone feel included, seem to have a more divisive quality about them. we are a community that's based on the differences that unite us and yet we lay a hand in dividing ourselves further.

the lesbian subset is not impervious to the power of in-fighting. it's a fact i admit with a very heavy heart. for years i've bickered with those who clung to the mantra of "lesbians love drama". i think it's a broad, unfair statement. no matter how many crazy shenanigans ladies seem to find themselves in- dramatic situations are universal. straight girls, hetero wiener-slingers, old women who wear the absurd red hats...'drama' has touched them all.

gay or straight- we all love something or someone. gays love other fellas; bisexuals love ladies and gents; pansexuals love everyone, pre or post op; and lesbians love other women. i hate to jump atop my hippie soap box- but damnit, WHERE'S THE LOVE GONE? we all need love. we all give love. we need to remember that. for a fact as obvious as this, it seems people have made a conscious choice to not love.

thanks to facebook and the basic misunderstanding that retelling a story infused with your emotional perspective ISN'T gossip (but it is), i'm aware of more than i should be. thanks to facebook ALONE i'm sure we all can say we know more than we ever could have wanted to in regards to other peoples lives. people claim to be private or even guarded with personal info but i don't recall a time i've ever approached someone and said, "hey, would you mind telling me about how apeshit your ex is?" and yet, in spite of these words never jumping off my lips i've heard many a'stories about some wacky ladies, post breakup.

in this summer alone i've witnessed countless couples cheat on each other; i've witnessed people ram their way into situations in efforts to 'help', when their actual goal was to destroy someone; i've witnessed people turn into heartless, hate-breeders who only gain pleasure out of being the star of the shit show. the hyper dramatic, self-centered, summer of sin was in full swing these past few month. it's not as if i was unaware that these sorts of situations existed but this summer has really seemed to kick up the crazy.

i went up to philly this weekend to visit my best lesbifriend, jarvis. i was hoping to get a taste of a new lesbiscene and see the beautiful faces of philly and new jersey lesbots. when i arrived jarvis was filling me in on all the drama that had happened in that area in recent weeks. not knowing the people made it easier to tune out but i heard stories that were mirrored back home.

at first i smiled. it was funny to me to think how universal bullshit can be. but then i realized the wave that crested back home was crashing here as well. young or old; femme or butch...estrogen begets a certain amount of drama- and i'm sorry, but it's fucking LAME and needs to stop.

"same shit, different vaginas man..." i said under my breath upon hearing a story about how one chick wanted to fight some girl who held her girlfriend's hair one night as she was vomiting. let's just take a moment to reflect on that one more rationally- her girlfriend was sick...she was nowhere to be found...and a stranger was helping. THAT'S IT. you should probably thank her for making sure your chick didn't chip a tooth on the toilet before you punch her in the throat- but, it's really none of my business.

i've had the same conversation with my friends all over the country. the general consciouses is that sometimes women can be emotional, silly geese. excuse me for using such juvenile terms but it's appropriate, if only for the flock-like nature of those who like to stir the pot. much like other drugs, gossip needs enablers to thrive. if you surround yourself with those who are equally as done with the bullshit, then dramatic situations will arise less often.

it's one thing to share stories about your life with your friends and loved ones but it's a complete other thing to rip others apart and claim you're merely 'being honest'. i've never understood when such hateful things fly out of peoples mouths followed by 'no offense, i'm just being honest.'

the thing that really pickles my cucumbers is that at the end of the day- we all love women. when i say love women i mean more than 'i really enjoy how you all look when naked'. from mind to mammaries, I LOVE ALL WOMEN. that includes the women who've fucked me over; the women who annoy me; the women who i've not returned their calls; and the women who've slept with my exes (...ok, love is strong for that one. i will more honestly say i can appreciate the fact that those women have a vagina and thus we are sisters in an 'isnt-this-a-crazy-fucked-up-universe' kinda way, but i digress.)

i get that we can't all be best friends and that the world wouldn't be balanced without discourse but i honestly believe we can all conduct ourselves respectfully with some dignity. there have been times when i've wanted to give a girl a hot-sauce soaked tampon in hopes that upon insertion she might feel a fraction of the pain she caused me emotionally. but what kept me from unwrapping that stick of cotton and dipping it in texas pete was the simple, yet powerful thought of- what if that was me? how would i feel if someone was attacking me in such a way? if we all asked ourselves these question prior to going
umbrella britney on each other, i think that fights would flow more logically- if not be all together avoided.

we are all in this little world together (and if you know young lesbians, we are all most likely sleeping together as well.) it's high time we treat each other like the goddesses we are-

Friday, August 27, 2010

magic in store

magic in store
random tidbit
the wind was warm yet it cooled my face as it tenderly flowed through the window. i was staring out and up towards the sky when a ladybug riding the breeze landed atop the screen. she wrapped her legs between the squares and began to dance around.
"today will be a great day-" i thought, as she unhooked herself to stretch her wings once more. "ladybugs always mean something magical is in store."

...something sorcerous is afoot.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the best way to get over one

the best way to get over one
is to get on top of another

i don't like AIDs. this fact, coupled with my fear of countless other STDs has prevented me from getting over my most recent ex...or so i've been told. i wasn't aware that my safety conscious attitude towards sex was an issue until my friend sat me down and dropped a deuce of truth in my lap. if it weren't for her enlightenment i would have been trapped in a very sanitary cage of celibacy for the rest of my natural born life...or at least until i got over my ex.

"ash- this summer has turned you into a social recluse! where have you been hiding? i never see you anymore!" i couldn't tell if she was genuinely upset or mocking me. "tell me- what you do outside of work? do you ever just wake up and do something crazy and unplanned?" i hate when peers ask that question. i've yet to find the perfect words to explain the delicate balance between spontaneity and rigidity in my world.

most of those i know live a life that's more conducive to last minute adventures. the life i've lead since dropping out of college at 18 has been consumed with plans, dreams, hopes and wishes- all devoted to my work. no relationship, party, friend or foe could prove to be more attractive than my goals. to this day very little can sway me from that path. sometimes it's lonely in the sense that i'm alone, but i've always been a relentless believer in hard work pays off, so whether it's now or 10 years from now i know i'll achieve what i've set out to do. that fact makes me happy.

this year, my year and a half long relationship dissolved along with the passage of spring. the only fiery-love left in my life comes from my work. no woman or activity has ever brought me the unrelenting joy and pleasure that work has. from my job that pays the bills to all the work surrounding my writing (blog and otherwise); the power that comes from creating is an infectious one. i've certainly felt that passion in my relationships with people but clearly nothing that has stuck with me longer than a few years.

i'm beginning to believe that work is the only lover i'll keep throughout the rest my days...and at the moment, that's an eerily comforting thought.

my friend, knowing my stance on work, snapped me back to reality by grabbing my face and stating, "you need to get laid." her blasé tone made me laugh. was she really speaking about sex in such a flat way? i told her, "it doesn't work like that for me. sex isn't an action as much as it's a reaction in my world. it has to be motivated by something in order to actually accomplish anything. if i went around slayin' hotties i don't think i'd feel nearly as fulfilled as i do when i complete a task."

after nearly falling out of her chair in a fit of laughter, my friend composed herself just enough to say, "you just compared sex- one of the most tribal, animalistic rituals man practices- to 'completing a task'." i corrected her, "i believe i put the task above sex, thank you very much." needless to say, she didn't share my enthusiasm. she kept stressing that i'm never going to escape the feeling of being in a relationship until i prove to myself that i'm not. that sounds like a rational line of thinking until you realize she's not talking about moving on so much as sleeping with others.

is it just me? am i the only one who sees the disconnect between the two? they aren't one in the same and yet everyone's advice is- get over one by getting under another.

i can't help but feel like i did in middle school when everyone had boyfriends except for me. my friends were learning how to kiss while i was picking popcorn out of my braces. i never felt bad about where i was in life until a popular girl alerted me to the devastating realization that i was lame. i was a virgin who couldn't drive. all the boys in school were lusting after my high-school attending sister. i still collected pogs (but only played the game by myself, which is arguably more lame than the fact that i simply collected them). i didn't even realize how lame i was until she took my bag of YIKES pencils and threatened to trash them. my squeal of terror did nothing to stop her ally-oop to the trashcan but it did confirm that we had different priorities.

without the help of that little douchette in seventh grade, my lameness would have probably spiraled out of control until i finally went through puberty 5 years later. the question now is, do i allow my beloved yikes pencils to be stolen and trashed once more? do i really get over one by sleeping with many? do i allow the words surrounding me to become my own?

i should stress the fact that i mean all of that in a rhetorcial sense. i'm content and completely satisfied throwing myself into my job. if crossing my legs and not partying makes me a prude- so be it...that makes for more porntime for me SUCKAS! plus, i really don't think that getting naked with new friends would make me feel anything but awkward...and lord knows i don't need help in that department!

Monday, August 23, 2010

white party lessons

white party lessons
respecting women + unorthodox hangover cures from strangers

perhaps i'm just a foul minded, perverted old man deep down but when i hear 'wet t-shirt contest' i also hear the unspoken whisper of 'nipples' and i hope against hope that actual flesh will be seen. i don't find myself alone in this line of thinking. i was packed shoulder to shoulder in a club full of lesbians and upon hearing "we are starting the wet t-shirt contest!" like moths to a flame, the masses scurried stage-side. looking at the faces around me, i noticed the crowd was peppered with smiles and mouths agape in anticipation of the glory we were all about to witness.

i've never been the type of woman who found strip clubs very offensive. any number of reasons could be the driving force behind this thought. from my work history in male-saturated fields to my personal experiences within the clubs themselves, i've always seen these women objectifying their own bodies and people paying them for the experience. never have i judged anyone who calls a club their home because on some level- it was a choice to be there, just as it was my choice to walk in.

now, the thought of men objectifying these women and not seeing them for the soft, beautiful, downright fabulous dancers they are does make me ill...but little, unassuming me making it rain on them is nothing short of magical. hypocritical? perhaps- but it's where i stand.

the crowd's verdict on strip clubs is still a mystery to me, however their thoughts on wet t-shirt contests is a lock. the love between both crowd and water soaked, t-shirt clad temptress' was a palpable one. i didn't hear one disrespectful word from those standing alongside me, except for the occasional, "oh the things i'd do to her..."

while the crowd was foaming at the mouth waiting for the show to begin, camera phones began to light up the club. like sweet summer lightning bugs, the glowing screens began to dance and i hoisted my video camera high above my head. the curtains peeled back and a t-shirt covered woman could be seen peeking out- i clicked on the flash and hit record.

after the first contestant was finished the MC grabbed the mic and looked sternly at us all. with furrowed brows and a finger wave that meant business she told us, "you all need to put the cameras and camera phones away NOW. you all need to RESPECT these women. if i see any of these photos on facebook- i swear...just put them away. and you- YOU WITH THE VIDEO CAMERA! I SEE YOU, PUT IT AWAY AND HAVE SOME RESPECT!"

you know the very first time your mother walked in on you while you were sharing a personal moment with yourself? that's how i a pervert who was caught lurking around a playground with a backpack full of candy and pokemon cards. after a talk with security and the promise that i would not post the videos, i was allowed to keep my camera and continue partying the night away.

but just for the record...i respect each and every diamond that graced the stage that evening. i bow down humbly towards those who allowed the celebrity guests to moisten their shirts with pitchers of water. i have nothing but admiration for both you and what i may or may not have seen through your shirts. you all were lovely but i digress, back to the party...

dani campbell (from "a shot a love with tila tequila") and elizabeth keener (aka dawn denbo of the l-word) were the celebrity guests in attendance that evening.
i won't go so far as to say tila had it coming from the jugaloos, because that's truly awful what happened to her, however it's obvious her decision making skills are less than stellar. for one to pass on the formerly-firefighting, lady-loving dani campbell for some forgettable fella is still a riddle to us all.
i'm 90% sure dani's hand was on my fanny and/or in the general vicinity of it during the time of this photo.
this could be explained by the fact that i'm taller than 80% of the non-athletic lesbians and that forces me to hunch to make sure i don't flirt with tranny height in photos. it could also just as easily be explained as everyone was drunk, so a little hand slip down to the ol' ash-ass isn't THAT flattering. also, with my subtly pink backpack taking up the better portion of my back area, where else was her hand to go? whatever, fuck that- we shared a shot a love. she may not know my name, nor be familiar with the basic structure of my face...but damnit if we didn't make a little magic that night.

the night ended as chaotically and with as much energy as it had began. the crowd at cobalt was a diverse and impressive one. i hit on no one and staid almost completely sober the entire party but the night was still a success. i did witness an unparalleled act of kindness from a stranger towards my friend.

my friend had one too many sips of alcohol that evening and was found throwing up next to a car. strangers and friends alike, rallied around her making sure everything was taken care of and she was safe. after buying crackers, bread and 7-11 pizza i returned to the stoop where everyone had gathered only to find it empty. these strangers had walked my drunken friend down the street to their home for safekeeping.

if that had been the extent of their kindness, i would have been overjoyed but one fella pulled out all stops and really wow'd me. not once or twice but multiple times he lovingly rammed his fingers down my friend's throat to ensure she would not have a hangover. i consider myself a pretty neat little friend...but i also let my OCD tendencies take the wheel from time to time and THAT most definitely would not have been a bridge i'd have crossed for her.

moral of the story is that it did prove to be a great hangover at least there's a silver lining to a bite marked-speckled, vomit soaked finger from a new friend.

Friday, August 20, 2010

luRe presents: the white party

end of summer bash
the white party
Saturday August 21st, 2010
$10 before Midnight - $13 after
Cobalt 1639 R St. NW (corner of 17th & R St.)

i don't often turn my blog into an events calendar. i suppose that speaks to my overall 'lameness' when it comes to social gatherings but save me the speech- i'm completely aware that socially i'm a terrible excuse for a 23 year old but knowing this works to your benefit.

how so?

simple my precious friends- i save you the hassle of picking and choosing which lady-saturated events to invest your hard earned dollars at.

the summer is fading fast and fall will soon envelop us all. generally this is regarded as a depressive time. with the change of season comes school back in session, heavier traffic patterns and our half naked sisters at the beach begin to bundle up. the ladies of luRe, sensing this depressive shift in their friends, knew they had to act fast and big if they wanted to save all dc/va/md lesbians! after some skillful planning luRe popped out a steaming pile of perfection in the white party.

month after month, luRe is responsible for hosting some of the best ladies events. their current claim to fame is their monthly parties held at cobalt, (corner of 17th & R St. NW) called BARE. it's hard to find women events in this "gay means gayboy" world. that's why i've always been a huge supporter of BARE- they always have a healthy crowd of beautiful faces swimming around.

the white party is sure not to disappoint. DJ Rosie & DJ Keenan will be spinning- the always lovely go-go dancers will be shaking their thangs- and everyone will be decked out in white. let me express this in a different way...a ton of ladies- in white shirts. now i won't go so far as to say that i'm going to sneak in water balloons just to see what sort of magic i can help facilitate BUT i think that the possibilities are endless. who knows what sorts of debauchery will ensue!

OH WAIT! the ladies of luRe are one step ahead- THEY HAVE A WET T-SHIRT CONTEST SCHEDULED FOR 1AM with a $200 prize! there is a cover of $10 prior to midnight and after that it's a humble $13. did i mention they have celebrity guests coming? the last time the l-word's tasha & dawn denbo popped in, who knows who they secured this time.

i hope you all find some time to go and check it out on saturday evening!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

deluded dreams

deluded dreams
and real life fantasies

have you ever had a dream that upon awaking still resonates with you? a dream so vivid it leaves you shaken and confused; a dream so intricate it couldn't possibly have been a simple firing of subconscious neurons; a dream that feels so real you are left questioning the line between reality and REM. after being jolted back to consciousness, your mind is in a haze and you ask yourself, "did that just happen?"

there is something to be said for the unspoken power of the subconscious. my most memorable dreams piss me off more than anything else. i'm not excited to recall the events, no matter how magical the dream may have been. if you read my blog with any sense of regularity you'd know that i'm a big supporter of dreams, so this news of my feelings towards my own nighttime visions might come as a shock.

as a child i had night terrors. i never remembered the dreams as much as i remembered waking up to the feeling of catching yourself just prior to a fall. i'd wake out of breath, shaken and disoriented. you know when you're dozing off in class or a meeting and you're trying desperately to stay awake. your eyes, weighted down by exhaustion (or sheer boredom), begin to close. your head and neck, no longer working in tandem, begin to nod forward then whip back. after perching your head atop your hand in attempts to wake up, it happens- you finally drift away only to be violently awoken by your head smashing into the table. this is how i woke up night after night as a lil fella (albeit sans table).

as a young adult my dreams were easier to recall but i still didn't consider that a feather in my cap. during this time my dreams seemed to tell the future...or, in actuality, i had one dream i was being cheated on and it turned out to be true. my mother raised a valid point when i told her of my new found miss cleo status, "i don't think you're psychic ashley. however, do you think it's possible on some level you saw it coming? not saying it's your fault, or it could have been prevented but maybe deep in your subconscious- you knew." i still have no idea how this delightful tidbit popped into my brain. it would make sense that it was somehow buried in my subconscious but then how does one explain that i was completely blindsided when the truth came out? oh well, lesson learned...i'm not psychic and my dreams are to be trusted.

fast forward to the present day dreamer, ashley. as of late my dreams have been extensions of real life. while i don't find it hard in waking life to acknowledge the fact that i'm not asleep, i do sometimes find it challenging to recall conversations or situations and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they did or did not happen. a lot of the dreams i have are possible. the dream-conversations i engage in are equally as plausible as the situation itself.

in addition to having to ask people, "did we actually have this conversation once before" it also pisses me off that i have dreams about finding things. nothing is more depressing to me then having a dream in which you find an item you have been desperately searching for. i would have no problem with these sorts of dreams if they lead to a major discovery upon my return to reality but that has never been the case. i will wake up overjoyed that in my dream i found whatever the misplaced item was. i will then rush to the location where it was hidden in my dreamworld only to discover, i've been duped.

what it boils down to is that i don't like to be disappointed- by my dreams or thoughts. waking dreams are more tangible and my love affair with them will endure forever. no matter how outlandish or far-fetched the goal might be, at least in my mind, it is always possible. there is always a way to turn a daydream into a reality. those scenes i see once my eyes are closed are not always possible. they leave me frustrated and confused more than they leave me enlightened and inspired. i've tried to interpret them in a way that makes them seem like something more than a manifestation of my subconscious with no avail. the dreams i've spent years constructing help me greet each morning with a smile and a purpose but as for my little nighttime visitors- to you i say, GOOD NIGHT!

Monday, August 16, 2010

classic authors teach me...

classic authors teach me
the art of swallowing

this weekend i took the opportunity to get better acquainted with a few old friends. when life proves to be a dash too disheartening, words- books- and dead authors are the safest and easiest escape. i can't imagine too many wacky shenanigans one could stumble into whilst reading a book. oh sure- you might be inspired (and if you were turning to bret easton ellis for solace you may think twice about picking up a hooker and then setting her eyeballs on fire) but for the most part, turning to the written word for a reprieve from day-to-day living is healthier than other, oft times more destructive, forms of escape.

in my world, there has always been a comfort and safety surrounding words. the way in which we choose to make these man made symbols dance can leave me with goosebumps or on rare occasion- with tear filled eyes. mr. thoreau and emerson were the guests in my head this weekend, as well as a cameo from sylvia. through their words i bypass all of the mundane, pointless, trivial blips on my radar. through them i can escape...if only for a moment.

while tangled in the web spun by thoreau specifically, a question surfaced and resurfaced in my mind- who is more the or beast? i've witnessed both cause destruction and wreak havoc in their own lives and the lives of others. for the most part animals devour each other not out of spite or jealousy but necessity. humans can rip each other limb from limb for sheer amusement.

as i peek through the trees thoreau paints in my mind, i know that my frustrations may be more than slightly influenced by the social interactions i've been part of lately. i've witnessed character shifts in people that are mirrored in the animal kingdom when one contracts rabies. from full of life and purpose to spewing venom and lost; people and animals have fewer differences than many would like to admit. it's worth noting however, that an animal must contract rabies whereas humans can fault any number of reasons for their social declination.

it would be easy to take the words of these literary gods and weave them into my life in a way that would bolster my disdain with people as of late. the challenge i posed to myself was not to fall down further in a pit of unsavory realizations but rather smile in spite of them.

you can stand on the side of being smug and righteous all by your lonesome or you can toss your hands to the heavens and dance wildly. if you wanna get out of this world an unjaded, open-hearted, creepily optimistic person then you're going to have to learn to roll with it. taking gulps of both shit and sunshine is how i plan on living the rest of my days; to simply swallow life as it comes (...that's what she said.)

the authors whose words who floated about my head this weekend helped me to see that life has, and always will, rage wildly around us. it's what we choose to focus on that really paints the picture of our world. if your palette only has negativity to draw from, how can you expect to paint anything but? it's natural in life to face both ups and downs, but there comes a point where you have to pull yourself back from the edge and remind yourself that life is meant to be enjoyed.