Sometimes I read what I wrote early in the morning and I think how pathetic is that? I really am doing okay, I just have periods of feeling blue. It’s totally natural and thanks especially to reading Pema Chodron, I know that it’s fine to feel the sadness. Usually, as the day progresses I start to feel better, or sometimes I have a good talk with someone and occasionally I get a bit emotional, but then I feel okay. This afternoon I went through boxes of old papers and threw piles of scripts away that I don’t need anymore and that felt good. Sometimes I just have to do something productive, even when I feel like wallowing in self-pity.

I do have to say that I looked at this blog from last year to see if my life was so much better – and actually it was worse. It was just when the stock market dropped over 770 points and everything seemed to be in freefall. We were in a huge world financial crisis, with the government taking over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and banks and investment companies were failing. Sometimes it pays to look back and remember on top of all that, last year Sarah Palin was running for President. (Opps, I meant Vice President.) YUCK.

Although for me personally 2009 has been a difficult year, every year has its challenges.

I just got off the phone with a friend of mine who I met in the 70’s, when we were both working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. R was the research assistant to the Chairman of the Organizational Psychology department at the Sloan School of Management and a very respected professor, the only woman in the department. I was their administrative assistant. It was my first job out of college and R and I used to sit in each other’s offices for hours and talk. (When we weren’t working. We talked a lot.) She’s coming into Manhattan on Monday (she lives in Connecticut) to see an old family friend of hers, her friend’s husband, brother and his wife — and then she and I will meet afterward for coffee to dissect the lunch.

What I love most about R is her stories. She is a great storyteller and I got to know all her friends through their stories and eventually, over the years, I met most of them. She got married when she was in her mid 30’s, and then I did too, and then she had her son and then a year later, I had my daughter. Over the years we’ve been in and out of touch, but whenever we speak or get together, it’s like we never were apart.

I was supposed to have tea with one of my old boyfriends D a few weeks ago. He flew up from Florida because he manages someone who was going to be performing at Carnegie Hall, but the client was arrested (something about driving without license plates and having a gun in the car.) We missed tea because he was busy bailing his client out. But today, I’m meeting another old boyfriend for lunch in the Village. He teaches at the University of Delaware and he’s in town to do some consulting for a college here. He was my second serious boyfriend, he dumped me right before my senior prom because he was having “an identity crisis” – (we all had them in the 70’s) and then we got back together when I was a sophomore in college and he was a junior, but then I felt I could never trust him, so I dumped him.

Strangely, one of the nights I did my monologue performance, a woman I am slightly acquainted with came over to me and said, “I am from Plainview, L.I. too.” (I mention that at the beginning of the piece.) She said she had just missed her high school reunion. I told her that my old boyfriend L.C. just went to his reunion this past summer and that he sent me photos of it. And she said, “Wait, L.C. was my boyfriend too!” And then she promptly took out her BlackBerry and called him on the phone. This was 10 pm on a Friday night. He was a little stunned, I think. Anyway, we’re having lunch today.

So…is it true that Sarah Palin may be getting a book deal for something like 6 million dollars? No way! Can she write? I mean, I know that I could use a good editor myself (I’ve always written dialogue) – but she is a moron. Now granted, she did run for Vice President. (She did, right? I didn’t hallucinate that, did I? But how is that possible?) Two months ago I never even heard of Sarah Palin and now I find myself in Tina Fey/Saturday Night Live withdrawal.

Anyway, it looks like my B job will be coming to an end soon and I can concentrate on finding something else. In the meantime, I’m reading “Secrets of Six Figure Women” (Barbara Stanny), “A New Earth” (Eckhart Tolle), “Extreme Exposure: An Anthology of Solo Performance Texts from the 20th Century (Edited by Jo Bonney) and “When Things Fall Apart” by Pema Chodron.

And Obama is busy putting together his cabinet. Two more months! From tomorrow! Something like four million people are supposed to be going to Washington D.C. for the inauguration. That will be amazing.

One more night. Just came back from rehearsal. I was reading this fun blog “Margaret and Helen” which I have included on my blog list and I just had to add my agreement with Helen (who’s apparently 80 something) – that yes, Sarah Palin is a bitch, McCain is a (senile) ass, Bush is a big jackass who’s practically ruined this country, Elisabeth Hasselwhatever is a fucking stupid idiot and someone should definitely knock some sense into her, and if Obama doesn’t win this election NY should secede and become its own country. I’m not moving, I’m just insisting we form a country of NY, Massachusetts and Vermont. Not so sure about Connecticut.

Sarah, You have no idea how many people are grateful for your nomination. Let’s start with Katie Couric. I have never heard her name mentioned as many times as I have in the last week. Everyone is talking about her – Katie’s interview, Katie Couric’s gotcha moments, she is probably beside herself with joy that she got those interviews.

And given how tired Bush jokes are, I’m sure that every comedian in this entire universe is grateful to have someone new to kick around. What about Tina Fey? Could her career get any hotter? When I watch you now, I think you are doing a Tina Fey imitation. Even I enjoy being you, answering questions like you, you are just so darn cute and folksy.

You know, if our futures and the futures’ of generations after us and the entire planet wasn’t at stake, I would say: thank you for being such a good sport. When people praised your mediocre performance last night in the debate I couldn’t help but think that a really smart and articulate fifth grader could have done just as well.

But what we need to remember is that today there are more important things to focus on (the economy, the House’s vote) and last night is over.

For me personally, we are starting to rehearse our solo shows and that is challenging and fun.

And I believe in my heart that the Democrats will prevail on November 4th.

Sarah Palin’s answer to Charlie Gibson’s question about whether or not she had any concerns about handling the job of President of the United States, was something like, “No, Charley. I don’t have doubt, I didn’t blink. I can handle it. I can handle the mission.” I know I’m paraphrasing, but that moment keeps haunting me. I wonder if Bush ever wakes up in the middle of the night, now that he’s nearing the end of his second term, thinking, “Wow, a complete fucking mess I’ve made of this country.” I bet Laura does. (Which is probably why she smokes.)

Yesterday, while walking on the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer walk, I was talking to someone who said her chief concern about Obama is: “He will take away my home. He will take all my money.” I didn’t even have enough presence of mind to respond other than to say, “Whaaaat?”

As a friend of mine said, if people in this country are really stupid enough to vote for McCain and the Republicans again then we are in such a sorry, sick state, that nothing we can say or do is going to heal it other than to go through the sickness and hopefully come out the other side.

I am finishing the Russian novel “Oblomov” by Ivan Goncharov (it’s 450 or so pages and it’s taken me awhile) – but everything is finally working out for Oblomov, who spent most of his life in bed avoiding any kind of responsibility or stress. Truthfully, as crazy a life as that is, it’s looking better and better to me.

And maybe we could ship Sarah Palin to Russia, since she can see it from Alaska?

I feel the need to take a break for a few days from commenting on this election. Especially since I just watched Charlie Gibson’s interview and he really pulled back from asking her tough questions and challenging her answers. It all felt so pat and rehearsed.

So even though I’m going to try to take a break from criticizing the Republican ticket, that doesn’t mean I can’t post something that I think is worth reading. Thank you, Eve Ensler.

Eve Ensler, the American playwright, wrote the following about Sarah Palin.

> Drill, Drill, Drill

> I am having Sarah Palin nightmares. I dreamt last night that she was a member of a club where they rode snowmobiles and wore the claws of drowned and starved polar bears around their necks. I have a particular thing for Polar Bears. Maybe it’s their snowy whiteness or their bigness or the fact that they live in the arctic or that I have never seen one in person or touched one. Maybe it is the fact that they live so comfortably on ice. Whatever it is, I need the polar bears.

> I don’t like raging at women. I am a Feminist and have spent my life trying to build community, help empower women and stop violence against them. It is hard to write about Sarah Palin. This is why the Sarah Palin choice was all the more=2 0insidious and cynical. The people who made this choice count on the goodness and solidarity of Feminists.

> But everything Sarah Palin believes in and practices is antithetical to Feminism which for me is part of one story — connected to saving the earth, ending racism, empowering women, giving young girls options, o pening our minds, deepening tolerance, and ending violence and war.

> I believe that the McCain/Palin ticket is one of the most dangerous choices of my lifetime, and should this country chose those candidates the fall-out may be so great, the destruction so vast in so many areas that America may never recover. But what is equally disturbing is the impact that duo would have on the rest of the world. Unfortunately, this is not a joke. In my lifetime I have seen the clownish, the inept, the bizarre be elected to the presidency with regularity.

> Sarah Palin does not believe in evolution. I take this as a metaphor. In her world and the world of Fundamentalists nothing changes or gets better or evolves. She does not believe in global warming. The melting of the arctic, the storms that are destroying our cities, the pollution and rise of cancers, are all part of God’s plan. She is fighting to take the polar bears off the endangered species list. The earth, in Palin’s view, is here to be taken and plundered. The wolves and the bears are here to be shot and plundered. The oil is20here to be taken and plundered. Iraq is here to be taken and plundered. As she said herself of the Iraqi war, “It was a task from God.”

> Sarah Palin does not believe in abortion. She does not believe women who are raped and incested and ripped open against their will should have a right to determine whether they have their rapist’s baby or not.

> She obviously does not believe in sex education or birth control. I imagine her daughter was practicing abstinence and we know how many babies that makes.
> Sarah Palin does not much believe in thinking. From what I gather she has tried to ban books from the library, has a tendency to dispense with people who think independently. She cannot tolerate an environment of ambiguity and difference. This is a woman who could and might very well be the next president of the United States. She would govern one of the most diverse populations on the earth.
> Sarah believes in guns. She has her own custom Austrian hunting rifle. She has been known to kill 40 caribou at a clip. She has shot hundreds of wolves from the air.
> Sarah believes in God. That is of course her right, her private right. But when God and Guns come together in the public sector, when war is declared in God’s name, when the rights of women are denied in his name, that is the end of separation of church and state and the undoing of everything America has ever tried to be.

> I write to my sisters. I write because I believe we hold this election in our hands. This vote is a vote that will determine the future not just of the U.S., but of the planet. It will determine whether we create policies to save the earth or make it forever uninhabitable for humans. It will determine whether we move to wards dialogue and diplomacy in the world or whether we escalate violence through invasion, undermining and attack. It will determine whether we go for oil, strip mining, coal bur ning or invest our money in alternatives that will free us from dependency and destruction. It will determine if money gets spent on education and healthcare or whether we build more and more methods of killing. It will determine whether America is a free open tolerant society or a closed place of fear, fundamentalism and aggression.

> If the Polar Bears don’t move you to go and do everything in your power to get Obama elected then consider the chant that filled the hall after Palin spoke at the RNC, “Drill Drill Drill.” I think of teeth when I think of drills. I think of rape. I think of destruction. I think of domination. I think of military exercises that force mindless repetition, emptying the brain of analysis, doubt, ambiguity or dissent. I think of pain.
> Do we want a future of drilling? More holes in the ozone, in the floor of the sea, more holes in our thinking, in the trust between nations and peoples, more holes in the fabric of this precious thing we call life.

> Eve Ensler

> September 5, 2008

I was trying to meditate and I just had to write this. I have to vent. I AM SO MAD. I cannot believe that anyone in this entire country would even contemplate voting for another Republican administration given the fucking mess this country is in. How bad does it have to get before they wake up and smell the coffee?? Do we have to be on bread lines?

I get it. McCain and Sarah Palin are like your cute old grandpa and your hot cousin. She’s a little like Roseanne when she first came on TV, but much prettier. She’s hot, she’s a babe, men like her, women like her, but PLEASE?? How could anyone in their freaking right mind choose to have four more years of these assholes being in charge of this country and sending us further down the toilet? I can’t stand listening to her speak. She did a great job at the convention performing her speech, but now I cringe when I hear her voice saying the same old b.s. every day.

I understand that a war that’s costing us billions (or is it trillions at this point) doesn’t seem to hit home. It’s far away in a country called Iraq which is somewhere over there in the Middle East. Far. I understand most people don’t give a shit about the environment. As long as they’ve got gas for their cars, air conditioning and heat – who cares about the future? No one cares about what we will be leaving our kids? No one cares about a health care system that is good at making insurance companies rich and not good at taking care of patients? No one cares about the enormous debt this country has? Freddie Mac and Fanny Mae have trillions of dollars in worldwide financing – if they had gone down the tubes we would have had a worldwide financial meltdown. And Bush and Co. have brought us here and McCain & Palin and Co. will continue these policies and we are getting so fucked.

I just don’t understand it. I understand that Obama is a tough sell for some people, but under Democrat administrations this country has flourished economically, which is not true historically for Republican administrations.

The other day my sister went to get her hair done in the small town in Pennsylvania where she lives. They asked her what she thought of Sarah Palin and she said, “I can’t stand her. She’s a bimbo.” (That’s my sister.) They were shocked. They said, “You are the first person all day to say that. Everyone loves her!” Charlie Gibson, you have the first crack at Sarah Palin. If you fuck this up, I’ll never forgive you.

This is really scary. It really is. And I think it’s one of the reasons I’ve been feeling so down lately. Venting helps. Women – where are you in this? Talk to your friends, talk to your co-workers, let’s do something to stop this train wreck. PLEASE.

Thanks. I feel a little better. Not much.

My friend A told me that she views washing dishes as a meditation. I have always disliked washing dishes (I don’t mind doing laundry), but I’m working at meditating now when I wash the dishes.

Steve, Zoe and I just came back from seeing Woody Allen’s wonderful new film “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” and the dishes had to be washed, so I meditated and washed and thought about the film and previous Woody Allen films, and then Sarah Palin came into my mind and I got really annoyed, so I went back to meditating.

We all really enjoyed the film and I have to admit that it was only the first few minutes that I remembered Javiar Bardem as one of the worst villains I’ve seen in years in “No Country for Old Men.” The rest of the time I was quite turned on by him (sorry Zoe, I may be old, but I’m not dead.) It was all so sensual, the city, the beautiful women (Scarlett, Rebecca and the stunningly gorgeous Penelope Cruz), Javiar, the countryside, the music, the homes, the clothing. I loved Patricia Clarkson’s character, the long marriage, the quiet desperation, but the love that still exists. Woody Allen was probably the biggest influence on me as a writer. I always adored his writing although I used to see his films the first day they opened and for the past ten years or so, I’ve missed several of them. But “Annie Hall” is without a doubt my favorite comedy and I could probably perform every scene. I related so much to that character and fell in love with both Woody and Diane Keaton. I know that to admire someone as an artist is not the same as wanting to know them personally. I remember years ago running into an actor on the street who I had dated briefly, and he was working on a Woody Allen film at the time. He said to me (about Woody Allen): “He’s horrible, really really hard to work for. There’s no fun, he doesn’t talk. Ever.”

And I won’t even get into the whole Mia/Soon Yi/Woody mess. He’s been with Soon Yi for ten years. I saw the documentary about Ingmar Bergman a few years ago and I wasn’t too impressed with him as a father.

Anyway, tonight I was happy to see a Woody Allen film that I found intriguing and unpredictable and very well written and directed.

And as for Sarah Palin, what can we say? That I can easily see her negotiating peace in the Middle East when McCain (happy birthday Mr. 72 year old) dies of skin cancer? That I will sleep well at night knowing she might be appointing three Supreme Court justices? That she will work well with both houses of Congress and world leaders, given all her experience as a Governor? All 20 months she’s been in office? In Alaska? Population 400,000 or so. That McCain’s strategy of choosing a woman was clever, but he couldn’t come up with a single woman in this entire country who isn’t more qualified? COME ON. I mean, it’s so infuriating that I want desperately to wake up tomorrow morning and read in the NY Times that McCain says, “Opps, I made a really big mistake. Never mind.”

What kind of an ending would Woody write? I saw this morning in the Times that McCain and Palin are planning to go to New Orleans today before Gustuv arrives. With any luck they’ll get caught in the storm and washed out to sea.

One more thing – there was an hysterically funny article in the NY Times last weekend that I missed, but I just read it. It’s Woody Allen’s “diary” about the filming of Vicky Cristina Barcelona. If you get a chance to read it, it will definitely make you laugh out loud. (And how often does that happen?)

In this dream John McCain (who was running for President) nominated a governor named Sarah Palin, an extreme conservative who’s anti-choice and a COMPLETE enemy to the environment, to be his Vice Presidential running mate.

I think she was a mom, fine, great, then a mayor of a small town, nice, then a governor of a state with very few people, okay… and then she would be Vice President of the United States, one heartbeat away from the Presidency.

NO WAY?? What an insult to every single woman in this country. To every politician. To every citizen. I want to wake up from this insanity.