I’ve been in contact with Pusser again. For those of you who remember, he was my partner in crime from the North Dakota days, as well as my boss for many years prior. I’m talking 2002-2006 era. And then, in 2009, he fell off the map. My map, at least. Completely.
This is not about that.
This is about how I feel thinking about that project now, and the project before that now, and me now, and him now. It would have been ten years, I suppose, and it seems like a thousand lifetimes ago. But it seems like yesterday. I still remember interviewing for an internship at his old home studio – I was 22. When I was offered the job of associate producer, I thought – I somehow KNEW – that it was a decision that would change my life. I had no idea how greatly.
He has a new website now, which I am choosing not to link to just yet, and a new Twitter account, which I find deeply bizarre. It’s like staring my bad self in the mirror. It’s like I’ve pried apart some misshapen scab. I think back on who and how I was then, about what I became, and it’s so, so difficult. Not only because of how *I* was, but because of how everything was. Everything was wrong in just the right way. And everything sure did fall apart perfectly.
I used to stay up late in Fargo pulling Tarot cards for myself, and whenever a King showed up, I would always imagine it was Pusser. I haven’t made a practice of reading cards since then, but I do wonder: what would they say tonight?
I’m on Twitter a lot for work, and, though it’s work and not play, I often find links to interesting content that’s not entirely suitable for an RT. As an example (and per the above):
Ketamine for depression? I don’t remember who I found this from, but it’s kind of blowing my mind. My time on the jam band scene let me witness firsthand what Ketamine can do, and I don’t think it was lifting anyone’s depression. The people I’ve seen on K look more like drunken zombies than free spirits, but hey. Maybe it’s all in the dose.
The next one is from @prajjwalpanday, who lives in not-too-faraway Worcester, and today sent out this link about Devil’s Lake, ND. Devil’s Lake is a tiny town in the middle of NOWHERE, and I spent a lot of time there shooting for the last film I worked on. Like, HOW TOTALLY RANDOM IS THAT. I’ve never heard Devil’s Lake talked about, even in (relatively) nearby Fargo, much less in Scientific American! It was a very Woah moment in my head, let me tell you.
And finally, @mashable taught me how to see who un-friends me on Facebook. So be on the lookout, dudes, because I’ve got my eyes open.
***Edited to add:
Want to follow *me* on the big TW? @erinire, of course, and also @ecaproductions.
So yesterday I was farting around online, looking for people to IM and compulsively checking Facebook, when my baby sister Molly
posted something about watching the meteor shower out by Castle Island. Now, I’m not a person who gets really into astronomy (or anything, for that matter, but let’s put depressive malaise to one side and continue on with the story), but the prospect of being somewhere weird at some bizarre hour of the night was incredibly tantalizing to me. I brewed a pot of coffee, grabbed a bottle of wine, and headed over to meet her in Dorchester. I wore a tank top, a sweater, and my heaviest furry sweatshirt hoodie. I also wore leggings underneath my jeans for extra warmth.
What am I missing here ? Anyone? (Hint: look at the title of this post!)
I made the conscious decision to do this mystery midnight seaside walk WITHOUT SOCKS. I mean, it wasn’t like I forgot about them or anything, I literally thought about it and was like, “NAH, WHO NEEDS EM. I GOT MY LEGGINGS.” Let me tell you, that was a dumb, dumb move.
As it turned out, we all (myself, Molly, and her two roommates) (who have an awesome band) underestimated not only the cold but also the windchill. Halfway out to the dock we were all shivering, and we spent more time trying to hide from the wind than we did looking at the sky. Like, who’d have thought, there’s a fucking BREEZE out here in THE MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN. Lighting a cigarette was an exercise in futility, and the cold had penetrated all my layers. After five minutes, I could no longer feel my little toes. After 20 minutes, I could no longer feel my feet. I lay down on the asphalt and thought about frostbite and that really cold day in North Dakota and I watched some meteors fall across the sky and we all laughed and laughed, and then I thought: this is definitely the best time I’ve had in a long time. Despite the feet thing.
I hate GPS the way some people hate paperboys. You know what I’m talking about; that little white envelope, the hope for a tip, a reminder that you’re a horrible person because you’ll never – EVER – tip the paperboy. GPS is like that. It brings up your insecurities in this mindfuck backdoor fashion, all sweet on the outside but rotten at the core.
It started in Fargo, when the crew decided to travel with one. Her name was Karen, she had an Austrailian accent, and I hated her. I mean, Fargo is not a complicated city to learn – it’s basically a big grid, no one-ways – so I found their reliance on her not only pathetic but also personally insulting. I consider myself a good navigator, and it bothered me to have my position usurped by a satellite-driven voicebox. The kicker came when they enlisted her for directions to the restaurant we’d go to almost every night. Literally, from our hotel it was right left right go over the highway destination on left. COME ON. I do miss my job very much, but Karen… that bitch can go screw.
Happily now, Katsu and I have a GPS of our very own! In the Smart Car! Hooray! She doesn’t have a name yet, but my husband is at least as reliant on her as DSP was on Karen, and I am similarly afflicted with arrogance and misplaced rage. I feel that the GPS erodes one’s ability to put things together for oneself, to make mental maps of one’s surroundings, and that VOICE. Oh God. So bossy and annoying. I’ll use my iPhone any day for help with directions, but I’d rather set myself on fire than turn to the GPS.
I know that this might be alarming to some people. I might lose some friends here. So many people have GPS – love GPS, that I often feel part of a distinct minority. But I maintain that our reliance on such toys will eventually cause humankind to lose our inborn senses of place and movement. Like the little toes, over time they will wither and die. Consider this, before you turn on your TomTom to get to the grocery store or your sister’s apartment.
And seriously, I know I’m not the only one who feels that way about paperboys.
I’d been thinking about it for awhile. I’d really been thinking about it for a good, long while.
I had two already: the first, a shamrock, became kind of a family tradition once my little sister had a twin clover inked on the other side of her abdomen, and the other was hand-drawn by my first and only girlfriend. So both are special. Both have meaning. And after all this time in ND, I finally felt it was time to add a third.
The day’s shooting schedule entailed two to four hours cloistered in the crew van, and I was in the kind of mood where I’d like to set shit on fire using only my eyes. After several angsty tens of minutes, I decided that enough was enough. I handed the van keys to Buckethead and set off in the direction of the nearest tattoo parlor.
I ran into the shop like a lunatic, brandishing my iPhone with my picture of the NODAK sign from the TruValue store on Main Ave, not realizing how odd it was for someone to come in off the street and ask for a tattoo like they’re asking for a pedicure, then sat and did crosswords while Andrew (above) worked on the stencil. It was one of the few times in recent memory where I felt totally relaxed – I had nowhere to be, nothing to do, nowhere to go.
Even as I settled onto the table, even as the needle started up, even when I should have been feeling at least moderately nervous, I was just wrapped with this sense of quilted certainty that everything was unfolding exactly as it should be.
I love how my shamrock reminds me of Megan and I love craning around to see the lotus blossom on my back and thinking of Brenna, even if, by now, both emblems are so much a part of me that they don’t even register as art. And I know that I’ll always love the surprise of looking down and seeing the NODAK on my leg, right side, just below the knee, even after enough time has gone by that I’ve forgotten it’s there.
I don’t think the boys thought I’d do it. I mean, shit, even *I* hardly thought I’d do it. But sometimes we surprise ourselves, and I’m so glad I did. oh, NODAK. I do adore you.