Venus DeMars

Venus DeMars
Glass Plate photo

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Did I tell you guys that I cried the first time I saw this:? "I Have Always Loved You."


I'd just come back from walking out and around in the morning after Lynette and I had one of our big blow out arguments in NY... ( that argument was what inspired the song: "Love Is Nothing" ... just some trivia I suppose.)

It was a rainy week... and we were there painting the room which is now featured at the Carlton Arms hotel as one of the more popular rooms: #5-D; the "Venus & Lynette / All The Pretty Horses" room.


Anyway... it was one of those arguments, where Lynette is so angry at me for being so self centered, and "screaming quietly" ... you know what I mean... as we walked down the rainy wet sidewalks around Gramercy Park... I, of course, kept silent, which is what I always seem to do in arguments... I just don't know what to say... I try and stay calm... try and think... never seems to work... then sometimes I blow up.


Did I tell you guys I broke both my hands cuz of blowing up? Yeah... stupid. Once when I was about 21: (the right hand..., first band..., strummed with a cast..., played the Cabooze on a trip down to Mpls from Duluth for a gig..., (Back when The Suburb's were the big Mpls band.) Lynette and I weren't married yet..., I punched a wall.

- Then again once just a few years ago: The left hand..., the ATPH band..., learned to fret with 2 fingers..,. played Milwaukee...,Club Anything... I had punched a door frame.) ....I think I'm done with all that now.


Anyway.., yeah.., I came back the the room we were painting... Lynette was painting poems on the walls, I was painting theme and imagery. We were still stupid mad. I got back, and Lynette was out, I wandered around, then decided to work in the bathroom on one of the murals, and I saw what she'd painted... Pretty much broke my heart.



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ATPH in NY 2-2010





I'd started writing this blog a few times... even did the full point to point follow up of the last few days of the NY tour for you... then just gave up.


I went to Duluth to put in my week helping take care of my Mom... and then while driving back I decided I needed to re-write it all.


It was tough in Duluth... Mom's content enough, but money's slipping away cuz she needs 24 hr care, and we need to compensate for that time spent taking care of her even with help from family and friends...

We need to look at moving her to an assisted living place where we can get help with financial costs... and better care for her... but, of course she's not understanding how things have changed...


Her memory is worse... it's now good hr's instead of good days. The rest of the time... she sleeps, or kind of 'swims' through time. I bring her to a senior lunch, where my Aunt (who's in her 80's ) also goes... she wants me to bring my Mom to come visit... but there's the 12 stairs up to her front door, and Mom just can't make it up that many anymore. My aunt's memory is almost as bad as Mom's... and she doesn't believe Mom can't make it up the stairs... so we argue. ("Fire from her eyes!" my Cousin sez when she's argued with her about the same thing...)


We're pushing it for having Mom at this lunch... it's not really set up to take care of someone with these kind of memory issues, or health issues... but they really like my Mom there, and she likes it there too.


Back at home we play domino's a lot.













4 nights ago, Mom called my aunt and asked if we could come over to visit... (I'd suggested that she call, and ask my Aunt to come visit us. )


I had to call back, and correct all that, and argue some again, then tell my Mom we couldn't go visit her cuz of the stairs... and she gave me the deepest - saddest look. she said: "Oh, Let's Go! We can do ti!! It'll be fun!! Let's Go!" Broke my heart again...hard.... hard.


How did it happen that I'm now telling my Mom "No, you can't do that." instead of the other way around? .... all those years growing up. the push and pull of life and desire.


I suggested we just go for a drive instead... went to the lake shore... drove out to the end of Park Point. Went down Superior Street into downtown Duluth... Saw the sunset... saw the city lights. My Mom loved it... forgot all about the stairs... by the next day, she'd forgotten all about the drive.



Me and Mom at Lake Superior



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Back in NY:

Yeah, what did I write in the unpublished first draft blog?

Hmmm...


Well, we got drunk.... some of us too drunk. Fought the headaches the next day...LeFreak's knee got really, REALLY bad... Emily visited her Mom on Long Island, Eden (one of my former bass players,) came to see us with her Boyfriend Adam... The gig at Arlene's Grocery went really well... but had to do a solo cuz my drummer Trev had personal conflicts which eclipsed the trip at the last minute...so we had to scramble to make it work... but it did. My long time friend and producer Barb (or 'Super Buddha') came to the show. My other long time friend Michael, a.k.a. Mistress Formika, Jones MC'd the event. The event was "BadAss Burlesque" hosted and created by Velocity Chyaldd. LeFreak and Emily danced onstage. Then also on the floor after the set, and the event.... till the last-call locals replaced the event audience... (they kept asking me why I was dressed like I was..., all the rest of the burlesque troupe having left by then, & only me, the only one in the bar wearing a corset and pasties.... Weird!! ... Did you feel it?... I just had a flash back of small town America right there in lower east-side Manhattan!


I'd decided it was time to go...


LeFreak and Emily stayed, Me and Eden and Adam went to catch a cab. I dragged my sorry-ass guitar and lights along with me down the sidewalk..., still in heels..., still in corset and pasties, but also, tastefully, in a long coat.


-- Did I tell you guys how Eden was feeling so bad for me, after we'd left Arlene's Grocery that she insisted she carry one of my things.... heavy as they were? She tried... got about 10 feet, and totally fell flat on the sidewalk! off balance from the weight, her small stature, and perhaps that last scotch? ... I took my guitar back, while wishing I could scoop her up as well, like a kitten, and carry her along with me and the equipment. Adam, screaming at the cabs for not stopping... and about as wiggly as Eden. me too almost by then-- all very cute in the struggle I'd like to think.... the memory of that will stick in my mind for some time to come I think....


No cabs willing to stop, All had fairs going to Brooklyn. ...Had to walk for about 10 blocks towards the hotel till we finally hailed an empty cab... Blah, Blah, Blah... normal last-call NY.


Got home...

Got to Duluth...

Talked the tough talk with my drummer about trying to follow through, but also understanding how life gets smack in the way sometimes... but still... and I Hate doing these talks!!! and so, how to balance? How do I balance?


Finally back home now... Another argument about time... No time... an argument about feeling alone, aloneness, about too much self centeredness... you know, normal argument stuff.


Got through it... kind of.


So now I'm thinking about us... all of us.. We're all so alone... We're born alone.... struggling to breath.... but we grab onto life as hard as we can, tight! fighting all the way. And we struggle to be together... Find that lost soulmate... carrying each other... carry each other's things... For a time, perhaps we really do it... We get our balance... we help our friends.... We find our partners.... perhaps we make that difference. And we live that life, ....OR we live it...., then lose track...., then live it again.... and lose it again... eventually we get old... and things fall away, our balance gets shaky, and the stairs become too many. Maybe our partner dies.... our friends drift. But we keep trying..... up until the end I think seeing my Mom... remembering my Dad.


Yesterday it occurred to me that even when we're hating, we express love, cuz we're feeling it's loss so intensely.... Maybe???


The night before I left for home, (3 nights ago,) my Mom wanted to know if we needed to get up for anything... and I said I was leaving that next morning, but we'd been getting up at 7:30 or 8 am, so I wouldn't worry... and she said: "Well, I guess... but, when we start school, we're going to have to get up even earlier cuz school starts so early..., but I keep forgetting..., it's still summer vacation."


I said: "yeah..., I guess we will."


Did I tell you guys I cried the first time I saw this?: "I Have Always Loved You."


6 comments:

the devil said...

I struggled with my grandpa and memory loss. I like to think that as long as *someone* remembers the good times, that not all is lost. So I remember Grandpa Melvin, we had a blast. I'm sure you can do the same for your mom. Funny time here...listening to the basement mixes...'have mercy' just came up as I wrote that last sentence. I like this blog. I like your songs. I'm glad we met, and glad I'll have the chance to remember you when *I'm* old.

Lynette said...

Am I allowed to comment? So much slogging, but your mom is still a wonderful woman. I think we can get her to Irene's through the back and the side door when most of the snow has melted.

I'm going to let the poem/statement stand as is. That's always the way it is. But I am not comfortable being an inspirer of broken fists. I would rather inspire other things.

Regarding some of the other issues, I've told you, and now I will tell anyone reading this: you are too forgiving of people who let you down. Perhaps that's the wrong way to phrase it. You are too willing to depend again on people who have demonstrated themselves to be undependable. I don't think you are doing them any favors. We all need to be adults at some point or another. You aren't operating in a fantasy world, you're creating art. It's serious business. Yes, people make mistakes, but if they can't own up to their mistakes and change for the better, they need to spend some time in another classroom.

So that's my heretical comment. Erase this, if you dare.

Tokyo Biker Mommy said...

Simply, wonderfully, beautiful. I'm so glad you're doing a blog and i get to read it.

shitorsugar said...

i'll be back to read more but your first story (about your fight) gave my the weepies cuz it's so sweet, human and tender. thank you for sharing that story.

Amy said...

This entry made me cry...several times over.

I'm so, so glad you're blogging. I LOVE these stories, exactly as they are -- how they shift in time and place, from senior lunches in Duluth to bars in NYC and from memories of violence to such feelings of love. That is how life flows, I think. I'm also thinking a lot about your statement that hate is really still about love...because it's the feeling of the intense absence of it.

In less sappy news, that's so cool that you're friends with Mistress Formika, and that photo of your mom with the dominoes is awesome. :)

Sister said...

Venus, read your blog, and then Lynette's response. There is an Shelley-esque echo. The letters Mary and Percy wrote each other. She the embracing, enhancing loyal Aquarius companion to his outrageous Leo glory.
Poignant cutting perception of each other. Deep and eternal affection evidenced whether the experience at hand was tragic or sublime.
Keep writing. Fantastic.