Self-Isolation Diaries – Week 27

Greetings, Internet! Hope everyone’s staying as safe, healthy, and sane as they can. Did an Instagram live, watched lots of tennis, and have just been in a songwriting mindset all week. My genre is “anger,” and that’s fine by me. Daily summaries below!

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Three (9/11/20)

  • My brother-in-law came over to fix my shower chair (yeah, it was still broken). And now it’s fixed! Huzzah!!
  • My mother’s here! She experimented with cardamom buns. I’m a cardamom stan, so I am a very happy hermit.
  • She also made egg creams (with seltzer this time).
  • Worked on writing workshop draft.
  • Decided to do covers of songs that remind me of October for October, provided that I have enough time for them. Expect something from “The Nightmare Before Christmas” if I can muster it.
  • Currently feeling: Was all set to start Push to Walk in a couple of weeks, until my father decided he was no longer okay with me going to a gym. Because ‘Rona. I wish I knew how to drive so I could just go there myself. [Edit: his mind has been changed again; I am starting at some point soon!]
  • Currently looping: Death Cab for Cutie’s “Transatlanticism.”

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Four (9/12/20)

  • Had three dreams/nightmares last night. One involved me going around what looked like an empty high school (but not my high school). Two involved “The Ring,” one of which had Kristen Wiig starring in it. They were very confusing dreams. Then I awoke to find that my period had started. So that was a freaky way to start my day.
  • Did the FES cycle.
  • Checked my mail after weeks of not checking it. A friend’s wedding got postponed to next summer.
  • Osaka!!
  • Did some reading for my reading group that meets next week. Venetian sailing!
  • Practiced guitar to the point where it now hurts to type with my left hand, so, calling that a win. I was thinking for October, I would cover songs from artists that remind me of Halloween. Going to do my best not to pick a deep cut Evanescence song, even though I’d really like to.
  • Currently feeling: I keep writing down potential song lyrics that pop into my head, and now the “Notes” app on my phone is full of disjointed verses and things. On top of that, the “Voice Memos” app on my laptop is full of random melodies and things. It’s a lot of disorganized clutter, and I wonder how actual musicians handle this.
  • Currently looping: Alanis Morissette’s “Uninvited.” I haven’t heard this song in a while, but it’s such fun to belt.

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Five (9/13/20)

  • Did arm exercises while watching the finale table read for “The Good Place.” SO MANY FEELS.
  • Recorded the video portion of “Jackass.” It goes up on Thursday. Eek.
  • That U.S. Open Men’s Final. Holy. Moly. Amazing. Just, wow.
  • Currently feeling: I watched an interview with Lizzo and Jameela Jamil. I don’t listen to Lizzo’s music that often (I just like listening to sadder/angrier genres, okay?), but I feel a sense of relief anytime an artist expresses some insecurity when they started out. At one point early on, Lizzo says (about her music): “I was just so afraid. I was like no one wants to hear what I have to say. No one wants to just look at me, and like making solo music was so hard for me. And I would always be in these groups with my best friends, and women that I thought were prettier than me and cooler than me and more interesting than me, and I mean they are pretty and they are cool and they are interesting, but I would always put them on this pedestal like they deserved the spotlight more than I did. And they didn’t realize I was doing that. They did nothing wrong. It was me.” Fine, I’m never in groups with people, but I have a similar feeling of “No one wants to hear this wheelchair girl singing about the boys who were jerks to her.” My default setting is to think that everyone else would be a better performer than I could be. I swear, my guitar instructor has to give me a mini pep talk before I play any original material because there’s a voice in the back of my head that’s like, “Wow, you wrote that? It sucks. No one wants to hear that.” It’s just nice to know that Lizzo, the queen of confidence, has also had that thought (and she’s a pro). Makes a mere mortal like myself feel better.
  • Currently looping: Of Monsters and Men’s “Your Bones.” I used to love how slow and sad this song was years ago. And then I just thought, “Hmm, haven’t heard that in a while.”

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Six (9/14/20)

  • Did the FES cycle.
  • Guitar lesson! Learned how to make my depressing songs even more depressing. Currently workshopping a song my instructor has dubbed “Depressing Song Number 6.”
  • Virtual hangout with writing buddy! Managed not to get sloppy drunk.
  • Currently feeling: Okay, I might be kind of tipsy right now, but upon further reflection, I kind of love “Depressing Song Number 6” as a title. It’s my genre, what can I say?
  • Currently looping: Fall Out Boy’s “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light ‘Em Up).” So much fun.

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Seven (9/15/20)

  • Did arm exercises while watching “The Defenders.” That reminds me, I’ve only seen season one of “Jessica Jones.” I should get back to that. David Tennant was just such a terrifying villain that I couldn’t imagine anything topping that, so I wanted to take a break from the series on a high note. But I should get back into it.
  • My mother stopped by so she could drive me to a gynecologist appointment. The first time I tried going to a gynecologist, they refused to examine me. So that was fun/ableist AF. This time? Much better. They even had a portable ramp outside their office all set up by the time I got there, so extra points for them.
  • Went to L.A. Burdick for a decaf caramel latte (pumpkin spice who?), and for a mini chocolate restock. And a cookie. I still feel like I should’ve hauled more.
  • Number of times outside: Twelve so far!
  • Currently feeling: Worked on another angry breakup song. I love listening to breakup songs. I love writing breakup songs. There’s something so cathartic about yelling onto a page/into a microphone. Breakups are endings and beginnings. They don’t even have to be romantic (heck, I’d run out of material really quickly if I only did romantic breakups). Friendship breakups hurt. Any type of relationship can have a breakup, and it can suck, and it can feel so good to write and yell about it (and then set it to music and make it rhyme!).
  • Currently looping: In This Moment’s “Sick Like Me.” Seemed appropriate given all my feelings on yelling in music. Although I’d love to learn how to scream like Maria Brink.

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Eight (9/16/20)

  • Did the FES cycle.
  • Did an Instagram live with Miga Swimwear! Talked about that spinal cord injury life, academia, and a wee bit of music stuff. You can watch the replay here. The sun from my window was just hitting me right in the face. I should have sat near a different window. Whoops. At least the conversation was fun!
  • Have been on a songwriting kick lately. All angry. I’m embracing my genre.
  • Recorded a demo for “Depressing Song No.6.” Until I come up with a better name, that’s what we’re going with.
  • Started “Hannibal.” It’s creepy. I like it.
  • Currently feeling: Did I spend much of the day doing musical things? Yes. Regrets? None. I have a designated “work on the dissertation” day. I promise, it’s happening. Should I tell my advisor I have a YouTube channel? There’s always a chance that he’s already found it, and just doesn’t bring it up because it’s not related to academia. Who knows? Then again, I’m Facebook friends with a number of medievalists (some of whom read my blog, hi!), and if they haven’t expressed concerns to me directly about my ability to get my dissertation done, then I think I’m okay. Or so I’ll tell myself.
  • Currently looping: Billie Eilish’s “bad guy.” Oldie, but a goodie? No, I cannot in good faith call this an oldie. Time in quarantine moves at a strange, wibbly-wobbly pace, but not at a pace such that Billie Eilish qualifies as having “old” or “throwback” music.

Day One Hundred and Eighty-Nine (9/17/20)

  • Did arm exercises while watching “Hannibal.” I feel a bit strange watching this having never seen “Silence of the Lambs.”
  • Posted “Jackass”! It’s out there in the world! Go listen to it in my plaid-wearing glory!
  • Virtually caught up with a friend. Sent her my most recent demo, because she’s my acting manager.
  • Therapy! Am completely blanking on whether I have therapy homework. I don’t think I do, otherwise I would’ve written something down.
  • Currently feeling: “Jackass” is out in the world! Time to record more things. Also have to get out of the “my demos are terrible until someone else says they’re not” mentality. That’s not productive.
  • Currently looping: Diamante and Breaking Benjamin’s cover of The Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris.” There’s a part of me that would really like this song to be covered by a symphonic metal band. It would sound incredible if, say, Nightwish gave it a go.

Thanks so much for reading! Stay safe, wear a mask, and figure out a voting plan.

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