Tuesday, January 31, 2006

operation "westward purr": successful

when i picked brer up at the airport he was laden with his backpack, and a cat carrier in each hand. he said, "i'm not going to be able to relax until i know these cats are safely delivered to your house. i'm a nervous wreck!" from the King of Cool himself, this was a weighty statement. we loaded those guys up into el caballero negro and beelined it to the house at 510. every few moments one of them would send out a whoaful "rrOUrrr!!" just to make sure we hadn't forgotten their plight. once in the house, we showed them the amenities, and rubbed them down with a handful of nip. after their initial eager investigation and much descriptive meowing, rodolfo retreated to the darkest corner of the closet, and kitty behind a window curtain.
brer had relievedly reached the beer portion of his day.
i introduced him to sac-to by foot and by beer. around mckinley park, then downtown by way of capitol garage coffeeshop for coffee and guinness. through the capitol grounds arboretum, and finally met sealion and mackindaddy for dinner at the pyramid brewery, by way of rivercity brewing company. :)
next morning, sealion, brer, and i ate breakfast at cafe bernardo (gotta love those cornmeal pancakes!!) and headed to tahoe for snowshoeing. uncharacteristically gloomy, the sky did not affect our mood. we hiked the groomed trail for a while, and then the boys expeditioned it up some fairly vertical banks of sun-glazed powder. (i'd hang back a few feet, and then when i assessed that they might actually make it, i followed along. .. ) this bushwhacking.. or powder-tromping, or whatever you wanna call it~~was FUN. we topped-out to some expansive views of the mountains. with the clouds, everything was all white and gray, smeared with dark patches of snow-swathed fir trees. we slid down the back of a couple of climbs, with feet propped up high (ok. . so mine were a lot like snow-ploughs.. i still did it, didn't i?!). a snowman snowangels and snowball fights (snowdevils!!), with nips from the flask now and then. our hike closed with irish coffee in the lodge at the foot of the slopes at kirkwood, where we could watch boarders pop up like popcorn on the rims of the halfpipe. drove the "even more scenic route" home (read: we took a wrong turn). dinner was (delicious!) sushi at kru, downtown. we all used brer's "jetlag" excuse to turn in early after a day playing in the snow.
we biked to breakfast at the fox and goose (try the new yorker omelette [whoa.] and, of course, the sourdough wholewheat walnut toast). brer, of course, couldn't help playing mechanic on my bike. :) our short weekend visit too soon to a close, but as jam-packed as you'd expect with this crew.
i marvel at a successful~not just calm, but a whole lot of fun~weekend with my recently-exed-husband, and my boyfriend.(!) ever-grateful that my friendship with brer stood the test of marriage, divorce, and now~~the afterlife; we really do think we might make it to the other side: bestfriendship despite marriage. so thankful to these two men who can see through possible ego-challenges to mutual laughter. i get to have the companionship of both my bestest-oldest-friend AND my sweetiepie. how frickin lucky am i? brer and i agreed it created a sense of closure, his visiting me where i live. it meant a whole lot to me that he enjoyed our space and felt comfortable here.
sealion, thank you for your confidence. brer, thank you for the blessing.

photos: the weather wasn't feeling photogenic that day, but at least you can tell we're having fun.
cat smuggling device. snowperson, snowpeople, snoweater, snowthrowers. lodge lunacy.

Friday, January 27, 2006

red rover, red rover!

and brer white the rabbit, too!
the cats will be staying; brer will have to go back home.

photos: kitty (black) and rodolfo (cute and dumb), poised for launch in their transcontinental nip-powered rocket chambers.
when white boys dance.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

sweet sealion

ok. it has come to my attention that i no longer feel comfortable referring to my sweetest companion as "troyboy." this might have fit his boytoy embodiment early in the game. (or not~perhaps we ask him?) this man has defied my expectation and categorization time and again. each new layer uncovered reveals more deeply a man of such genuine intention and insight. i feel so honored to be given these glimpses of his golden god-like character. so much of the time i avoid ladling too many accolades on him in my blog; i'm already so oozy with cheese as it is! but i realize in gushing about the other goodnesses and avoiding this glaring-bright good, i commit a huge oversight. and, hell, i'm the main person who reads this thing, anyway. ;)
i learn from him daily. i most admire his exuberance~his willingness to be a cheerleader (contrasting those of us who were class presidents in the "too cool" school). his willingness to admit that he doesn't know everything, and that he allows himself to be a beginner. his ability to roll with whatever happens and not stress changes of plans. i really like how much he likes people, and that he is a teamplayer. how generous he is, and open to new situations. and I LOVE HIS STYLE!! in a pair of jeans, or in full tribal makeup and ascot~damn, do he look goood to me!! i am delighted to see the art that he creates around his life. his aesthetic eye is unique and keen. i really am going to stop now; don't want my boy to blush.
so, we at WIDE WORLD OF TIF will, from this day forward until he creates a new name, call him Sealion.

photos: Sealion joins his clan at the pier,
backstage at new year's~~you figure out which is which.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

oy my boy

what i tell you bout this guy?

Monday, January 23, 2006


let me tell you about new year's. cuz i got some good shots, and it was a good time. as i wrote to you in an earlier entry, i expected not to get to perform with my lovely lucent family that night. they were debuting a new piece, of which i hadn't been a part of the creation process. cool. i would get to boogie-down audience-style, and maybe help out backstage as needed (isn't it always needed?). turns out they were performing my beloved elf-show. there's no way in hell i'd miss a chance to crawl around on all fours with my ass in the air, lick strawberry's foot while orley humps my head, intermittently gettin' to shake that jiggley booty forest-style. on stage while hundreds of people watch. what better way to ring in a new calendar year. the party, which was called Cirk-O-Six, was at a grand old theatre in downtown LA. every corner, arch, stairwell, and ceiling that could be ornately decorated, gilt, sculptured, muraled, was. besides the mainhall where we vaudevillians and cirquus-types performed (check out those wau wau sisters.. ), there were several other galleries around corners and down hallways with other art installations and live music happenin.
my handsomest pardner-in-fashion-crime was in perfect attendance, with rainbow-marbled hair that matched his professor plum purple zoot suit. (i bout jumped out of my elf-ears when i got a load of him in that get-up.) mackin-daddy with his lovely lady visiting from NYC, thoopadoopa superkate, a coupla her friends, ms. nikii and mister~~all these extra-curriculars were in attendance and mad fashion dazzlement.
the new piece that lucent dossier performed was new territory yet again. the costumes were intricate, organic, and a textural feast,yet again. live musicians joined our dancing crew to make wondrous in-the-moment magic (the violin solo broke my heart!). the highlight of the piece for me as a fellow-lucent-turned-audience-member, was to watch roger, who usually plays the comic-fool or monkey in our troupe. his modern-style duet and trio was as graceful, evocative, and perfectly-timed as his monkey is buffoonish and goofy. my favorite act of the night was my virgin viewing of DC Juicy, and, well, how can i describe them? comic hip-hop with frickin sexy dancers? Lisa, Orley, and my Strawberry, all from LD, dance hip-hop go-go style for this show, with changes of hottie costumes. fun. hilarious. sexy.
after we helped load-out at four a.m. (!), my pardner and i joined the after-party at Space Island, where we boogied the sun up. the place was still packed at seven when we could shake our tailfeather no more. we went to my favorite breakfast diner, Millie's, in silverlake, and had our new year's pancake and egg. my boy fell asleep on his toast. i have RARELY in my life done the all-night-through-to-the-morning thing (as is the routine for so many of my loved-ones in LA). i was proud to do it up right. we marveled: if someone had told you a year ago that you'd be performing and partying in LA on new year's 2006, etc. etc., with all the details, what would you have said? [buyer beware: a WHOLE LOT can happen in a year!!] [!!]

photos (randomly):
the theatre, outside rain, inside splendor, backstage chaos
showin' off that man o mine, after-party glamour-puss, sleepy in front of millie's ~ with the downtown LA skyscape in the teeny-tiny background, a coupla onstage elf photos by pixie ~ one of elf me sizing-up orley for a bite!
www.pixievisionproductions.com, for more ~ sea of dreams, LA

Sunday, January 22, 2006


and the puns just keep on comin'!

made these two collages this week. one's a self-portrait-o-sorts, the other is a card for my mama and her honey.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

hell yes

free will astrology for january 19: capricorn.

I suggest you proceed as if long-standing limitations have become irrelevant.

photo by sealion: blowing the lid off coit tower, sf.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

cookie! (read with cookie-monster voice)

and while we're on the subject of my amazing mama, why don't we finally get around to talking about Barb and Tif's Annual CookieBakestravaganzatacular!

growing up, i spent a lot of time with my mom in the kitchen. i had my own kiddie apron (with snoopy and woodstock on it)(eating a hamburger and fries), and loved to be mommy's helper. there's a photo of tiny me in that apron with flour all over (wonder if it was staged. . ). she gave me jobs like measuring the chocolate chips and grinding the nuts.
ever since i was .. eleven or so, we've had a big ol' christmas cookie bake on thanksgiving weekend. it started out not as a tradition, and then turned into one. and one of my favorite days of the year. it's such an event--this year, we spread it out over two days so that we could breathe in between batches. we prepare some doughs in advance so that they can already be chilled and ready to roll out and bake. there are bags and bags of walnuts, pecans, chocolate chips, coconut, melting- chocolate, sprinkles, not to mention the pounds of flour and butter and sugar. dozens of eggs. and pots of tea and coffee. we make out our list, check all the ingredients, tie on our aprons, set the coffee to brewing, and.. . WE'RE OFF! mom uses one side of the counter and i use the other, we share cookie sheets and oven responsibility ("did you set the timer?" "smells like they're done!") i like to pretend we have our own food show, and talk to the imaginary camera over my shoulder (yeah, so i act like this with or without high doses of caffeine and sugar--what's your point?) we usually have a man-friend around to run to the store for that ingredient we forgot, for "quality control," and to give us something else to fuss over so we get distracted and burn a few in the oven (these we call "biscotti" ;). about midway through we break and eat some thanksgiving leftovers. then, later, coffee with pumpkin pie. all the while listening to christmas records. the dining room table gets completely covered with row after row of stack upon stack of batch after batch of different drops of christmas confections. and about ten pm, after i've had my holiday sweater on while working around a hot oven for twelve hours, crashed after ingesting ten times as much sugar as i'm used to, and mom has forgotten the third or fourth sheet of cookies destined to become biscotti. .. it's time to cozy up by the tv and watch the food network! (i don't watch tv at home, so this is part of the treat of getting to visit with mom--the food network.) we watch iron chef, thirty-minute meal, what the celebrities are eating, and mom checks back and forth to see what they're re-decorating/remodeling on whatever that channel is.
the next day we do it all again. the first day is more for rolling dough, cutting, and baking, this day is more for decorating, assembling, and cramming one more recipe into the lineup. i get a cramp in my hand from decorating so many gingerbread folks with individually-detailed outfits and faces. we count the cookies, admire our product (and take photos, of course). it's hard to decide which one's the prettiest, and which recipe tastes best. we divide them up and put them in containers. there are always a few cookies left over that don't manage to get decorated or sandwiched after they're baked. and there's always talk of what we'll do better or different next year.

barb and tif's 2005 cookie lineup:
gingerbread teddy bears and palm trees
sugar cookie snowflakes with white chocolate
coconut macaroons
peanut butter-chocolate pinwheels
partridge-in-a-pear-tree sandwich cookies with marmalade
meringue mushrooms with chocolate-dipped caps
pecan tassies
thumbprint cookies with raspberry filling
chocolate-peppermint pinwheels (the experimental first batch..!)
what'd i forget?

Tuesday, January 17, 2006


yeah, and did i mention~~my mom got married??!!?
after he popped the question and produced the ring perhaps a week before, she calls me up the monday night before new year's and says, "tif, we're thinking about doing something crazy. .. !" i say, "well, you're asking the wrong person if you're looking to be talked out of doing something crazy!" (she liked this response. i knew she would.) "we're thinking about moving the date up. . ." "how soon?" "this friday!!" she was all a-giggle, as she has been since the week she started dating this sweet man in august. i told her i think timing is very important. if they felt the time was right, then who's to say otherwise.
they were married friday, december 30th at 3:30pm, in mom's living room, with a few family and friends. i gave her away over the phone (plane tickets to KY for new year's with that short notice were astronomical) with beau d holding my hand in his truck in the los angeles traffic violations parking lot (ha!). i got to hear the whole ceremony. and cried. they headed (from elizabethtown) to the lexington marriot where they rang in the new year with champagne and filet mignon and dancing and confetti (all a first for my mom. she feels like a queen).
a few days later the mail carrier delivered a tupperware filled with white cake, gold confetti, and white tulips from her bouquet. :)
my mom's a good woman with a huge heart. as beautiful as she remains, life's given her her share of suffering and tears. to hear her laughing, to see her in her kitchen dancing cheek-to-cheek with a man who adores her--my heart overflows with gratitude and joy. what a blessing.
to mom and mister: may your years be filled with dancing. :)

mom and mister (at thanksgiving),
me and beau d. in LA "live via teleceremony"

Monday, January 16, 2006

be mine:

be there.

Lucent L'amour
a visionary love fest

• Saturday Feb. 11th •

..In the newly restored St. Vibiana's Cathedral
Over 20,000 sq. ft. of Historical Architecture
Beautiful Outdoor Gardens
18th century style fashion Show
Multiple Art galleries and sculptures
The Fountain of Youth
Sinners Closet Confessionals
Extreme Lighting and Visuals

Full Cash Bar
Veggy and Vegan Snacks

..the sounds of
Lorin Bassnectar
El Papa Chango el circo
David Starfire space island
Helios Jive heliosjive.com
Oscure LABA
Porter Tinsley portertinsley.com
Jupiter do lab
Maximillion SF
Sammy Bliss and Jesse Wright pocket djs

..special performances
Dangerously Scandelous Dossier Fashion Show
.. by Lucent Dossier Vaudiville Cirque
More TBA

..art gallery curated by
Mike Russik transport gallery, six degrees festival
artists to be announced soon...

..sculptures provided by
Sean Sobczak
Ken Eeberman
More TBA

..sound systems
Turbo Sound by Mobius

..vegan and veggy refreshments served by

St. Vibiana's Cathedral built in 1880

The Door will open at 9pm on Saturday Feb. 11th, and the shenanigans will carry on until

Carpool out to the event. Driving is more fun with friends and we need the space to ensure that everyone has a safe place to park. Carpool! Carpool! Carpool!


Friday, January 13, 2006


and while we're on the subject of chocolate~~
what a good subject!! we stay here for a while. :)

i have tried another good one.
Endangered Species Chocolate Company
"Chocolate with a Cause"
Dark Chocolate with Espresso Beans.
70% cocoa, not bad!
and from the ingredient list it looks vegan.

it has a gorgeous tiger gazing lovingly from the wrapper.
they donate a portion of the profits to tiger protection efforts.
you open it up like a fortune cookie, and it tells you a story about tigers and their plight for existence. and about Thanksgiving Coffee Company that is sustainably harvested, and roasted lovingly in Ft. Bragg, California, and added to this delectable chocolate. www.thanksgivingcoffee.com

and you have a pretty piece of gold paper to use for origami when you're done devouring or savouring.

dagoba hits my spot




right there, just like that.

ooOOooh! !!
i've eaten a new chocolate!

and~~yes, it's that good.

usually i am strictly a dark chocolate girl. the darker the better.
but dagoba proved to me that milk chocolate can give me that special feeling too.

it's that good. gots to smoke me a cigarette after one bite!
(((*don't tell tb!!*)))

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


[written december 30, 2005]
that one jane's addiction song--is it called "home"? he at least says "home." i love that song.

finally felt right to return to LA. not sure if i'll be performing with Lucent Dossier, but feel really good about attending and supporting my family in their endeavor regardless.

rode the train from sac, leaving at 6:35 am. got to see the countryside with sunrise. fog, low and clingy, hovering just above soupy bogs. then through miles and miles of vineyards, and the backsides of industrial parks.

the evolution: of dreading even visiting LA, to missing it deeply for the loved ones who give it (and me) life. as i reunited with the backed-up streets, dirty sidewalks, homeless folks asking for change, endless vietnamese diners and laundromats, i breathed a sigh of relief and had to laugh at myself. if i can learn to love LA, anyone can. or maybe--anyone can change if they open their mind a smidgeon.

when i walked through the door at abundant sugar, beau d. (my sweetest sweetness), gave me a long and tender hug and breathed in my ear, "welcome home."
thank you.

sunrise seen from the southbound
my happy-blue travel bag avec balloon [at abundant sugar. composition, photo (and ribbon curling) by tomas verde himself]

dreadful no more!

i severed ties with the dreads!! those rainbow locks of power, energy, personality and history are .. history themselves.
i had to do it!
it had to be spontaneous!
i decided on the drive back from las vegas, and remained anonymously un-dreadful until the new year. . sneaky-like.
the first time i jogged without my beloved heft of locks, and felt the breeze on my scalp, it was shocking!!
being rainbowly dreadful lent itself to a particular brand of attention every day of the year (even when i didn't feel like it). not so much in the bigger cities (except atlanta), and not always pleasant or positive. a coupla brothas were downright confrontational with me, and i tried my best to be respectful of their point of view. i can't tell them what it's like to have their heritage, and they can't tell me who i am in my heart.
as much as i loved my dreads, even through the shearing process, i feel more like "myself" already without them. i feel lighter and spunkier. even more rainbow-delicious. as i evolve, the dreads began to represent the "old me," cherished and appreciated as she is. my beloved friend dar went through a similar ceremony for the new year~~he called it a skin shedding, like the snake. just as keeping something may have sacred meaning, the letting go is sacred as well.

to my dreads, i dedicate the scene in harold and maude (one of my favorite scenes--hard to choose, i know!!)~~when he gives her the penny that he had engraved to say "harold loves maude." they are sitting by a body of water. she looks at it, (and in that gorgeous accent of hers) says something like, "harold, it's marvelous!" and immediately hoists it into the water! "now i'll always know where it is!"

thank you, dreads, for your powerful medusa-lioness energy, your attention to detail, your ever-insistence on perfect imperfection, and your willingness to evolve in your own way.

photos (pick the photo you'd like to go with the caption!):
dreads on the floor!!
troy's scared.
the first snip.
me and my dreads (i kept a few there for a coupla days)
profile (nothing now but the nose!). even those last remaining stragglers are gone now.

welcome back and happy new year


after that last bit of self-indulgent melodrama, we need a balancing silly pill. although i think it's important to give voice to our personal pains and hurts, i think it is just as important not to take ourselves too seriously.(!) i am so frickin blessed, and still manage to wallow in low places sometimes. with this in mind, a poem (read with orange marker and flowers around the borders):

sun shines at my back
lover coming home
orange shoes by my side
i pout and feel alone.
surely all this beauty
cannot be deserved
i hurt and play the martyr~~
damn, am i absurd!

at this time, WIDE WORLD OF TIF would like to thank you for your patience as we underwent a "spiritual huddle." back in action, i've missed our correspondence. i gleefully anticipate the rainbow possibilities of 2006!!*!*
as my eyes come into focus from this meditation, i must direct your attention to some authors and books that have been invaluable to me so far in my quest for spiritual and artistic flight (however frickin cheesey that may sound).

Julia Cameron's book, THE ARTIST'S WAY, is largely responsible for helping me arrive where i am today. literally.
Rob Brezsny~~that rowdy irreverent much-more-than-astrologer~~has held a torch on my path for years now. ever since i picked up his newest book, PRONOIA is the antidote for paranoia [how the whole world is conspiring to shower you with blessings], it has blessed me in uncanny ways everytime i crack it open (and color its pages, write poems in the margins, rip out pages to make cards for friends..). i generally consider it a handbook and life-reference tool.
Thich Nhat Hahn, the vietnamese buddhist monk (and much much more!!), through his book BEING PEACE, has gently instructed me to live in the present, with a smile on my face. (!) you can't help but wanna be like him, to see things as he sees them. he's a cool guy. reading his words is like a good ass-kickin work-out. if my attitude is not matching up with my beliefs, i gotta read a little from him, and things make sense again.