Monday, January 25, 2010

Day/Task 2: Material Girl

To get kind of into the swing of things, I decided to literally be Madonna for a day. No, not in the Single, White, Female way and as it turned out not for a whole day, but to just channel her fashion-wise. Of course, it being winter and Boston kind of impeded this. I could very well go with the all-lace, ripped up tights and corset-top look but I'd freeze so I adapted the typical '80s Madonna for winter and for Leyla. My hair is already short and wavy with bleached parts so I just fluffed it out to it's maximum white girl Afro-ness and tied a ribbon around it. I also wore patterned tights with leg warmers and booties, an incredibly loud sequined sweater, and short grey leather jacket. I darkened my brows and pretty much slapped on the make-up. Darker eyes than I normally care to wear during the day and lipstick. Yes, lipstick. I never wear lipstick. Whenever I wear it, I end up wiping it off two minutes later because it feels too much like I have something stuck to my lips. And red-pink lipstick? The only reason I had any was because it was leftover from some long past Halloween.

I looked like a clown. No, seriously.

At least my bottom half looked pretty damn cool.

Yes, that is an extremely short lace skirt. Not the best move on the rainiest, windiest day of 2010 so far. Let me walk you through how this went.

Rain. Rain, rain, rain. Not the sweet romantic rain of the Madonna song (fitting, it came up on my iPod on random but by that point I was so past the irony, I just cursed), but hard, lashing, drenching, rain. The kind that slices down sideways and soaks you no matter how you try to hold your umbrella. Which, by the way, the wind took and had it's sweet way with. I had to throw it out within five minutes of walking out as it was bent beyond saving.

I had some errands to run so I decided to head out for the test-drive. Teetering on high heels in howling rain and wind was not one of my proudest moments. I don't wear heels unless it's some big fancy event and these shoes, though gorgeous, cut straight into my ankles. I still have the wounds and they hurt to touch. I have sensitive skin.

Anyway, walking took twice as long as it would have had I been wearing my trusty Iron Maiden vans (IRON MAIDEN RULEZ!) so by the time I got to Walgreens, which is a block away, I was quite literally a mess. I'm sure my face looked more like Alice Cooper than Madonna and my hair was plastered. I looked like a sad clown hooker. But a nice homeless man called me angel. But I also got raised eyebrows from a bunch of women. Man, sometimes I hate my gender. Must we be so bitchy and judgemental? At least have the grace to be subtle about it, jerkass.

I toddled back home, trying desperately to keep my hair from flying everywhere, holding on to several plastic bags, and crying in silent agony with every step. Which is when the violent wind decided to have me give a free show to Newbury Street and whipped my skirt completely up. I finally, finally got home and realized... I forgot my keys. So I had to wheedle my poor, unsuspecting doorman to come up with me and open my door. He probably now thinks he's figured out what I do for a living, looking the way I did.

See, this is the stuff that happens in movies. Time for a quest! A journey of self-discovery! Oh what adventures shall ensue! Except this is my life and I really do get myself into these situations. That being said, well it wasn't a complete waste. It was fun getting all dressed up for the day. Okay, for an hour. And now I can safely say how much I do like my own style. I will never be the kind of girl that looks like she's off to a fashion shoot everyday. But I like that. I do like my lace and sequins but I wear them with jeans or casual dresses and flat shoes. My style is me and it suits me and it looks good. And the boyfriend appreciates that he does not actually have a sad clown hooker for a girlfriend.

I am back home now, in Istanbul, but still working on the tasks as we speak/type.

Promise To Try Part 4

Days 31-100: Uhhh, generally adopt an air of Madonna for as long as this project takes and further? Well, not the heinous, control-obsessed bitch part of her (that I love anyway).

Shit. I ran out of stuff at 30. New plan. Count these as "tasks," and get them all done in 100 days. So, all this will be accomplished, probably not in order, by May 4, 2010. Excellent! I have a deadline. That's also around the time Elliot gets back so this works out fabulously. I start tomorrow. Huzzah. Oh, and if any of you have Madonna-related challenges that would fit this then by all means suggest away!

Enjoy amazing dark hair Madonna, my favorite Madonna, from last year's calendar, the month of September. That's right, my month.

Promise To Try Part 3

Day 21: Write a little series of kids books. I've been wanting to write about the joy that is my kitty but since there are so many cat blogs I didn't want to go that way. I'm pretty good at writing for younger audiences, most of my high school projects were just that, so I want to make a little kids series about a traveling cat; my Egglet.

"Madonna also signed a contract with Callaway Arts & Entertainment for five books, and published the first one titled, "The English Roses." The story was about four English schoolgirls and their envy and jealousy of each other.

Day 22: Get more involved with helping others. This might sound trite but I do want to help out and volunteer more. I will donate to Haiti aid and comb through my clothes for stuff I don't wear anymore but mostly, I want to volunteer at an animal shelter. I love animals and I do want to do at least a little bit to help. It will probably break my heart but be something I can be proud of.

"She participated in the televised concert "Tsunami Aid" and performed a cover version of the John Lennon song "Imagine." The same year, Madonna performed at the Live 8 benefit concert in London in July.

Day 23: You might not think so of me, but I like to dance. In the privacy of my room. With my ipod blasting. Hell my mother has caught me many a time and I was embarrassed and tried to play it off like, "Ohhh I was just listening to music, not doing anything else, nope, nuh-uh." I will make myself go to a belly-dancing class. Why belly-dancing? It looks awesome, I'm Middle Eastern so I'm counting on some cultural instinct to help make me not look ridiculous, and I've chickened out twice now and really just need to get over myself.

"Her tenth studio album, Confessions on a Dance Floor was released in November and debuted at number one in all major music markets."

Most of these seem like really big things to take on and they are. But this is a way for me to get going on all the big things I've planned on doing for the last couple years. And some stuff that occurs to me while I make this schedule.

Day 24: Get all dressed up, classic Hollywood style, and go out. Either for dinner or a night out with friends, just be glammed up. No jeans, nothing casual.

Day 25: Go to a gay club. I used to all the time in high school and it's time to do it again and "Vogue."

Day 26: Make a Warhol-type screen-print of an image I love so I can hang it up.

Day 27: Read Anna Karenina. Madonna always had whacked out females as influences and what better way to pay tribute to that than read a classic about a flighty but vivacious Russian?

Day 28: Learn to drive confidently. I just recently got my license but driving still kind of freaks me out, it was one of the reasons L.A. seemed too much. I don't want to reenact the, "What It Feels Like For A Girl," video, but I do want to be okay with driving.

Day 29: Cut up and decorate a few of my metal shirts to better fit me. Madonna invented her own fashion, why can't I?

Day 30: Watch The Drowned World Tour DVD because, well, that goes without saying. The most creative Madonna tour to inspire us all.

Promise To Try Part 2

India was a big influence in shaping Madonna's most beautiful, in my and my family's opinion, phase. It's also a country and culture that is both so similar and so different than mine that it inspires and moves me in ways my own countries, Turkey and Iran, don't. I love my heritage but India, like my childhood love of Egypt, is something extra.

Day 11: I'm not going to be psycho yoga lady like Madonna but I do need to exercise and get in shape. So I will reattempt a consistent Pilates regimen and get all fit and maybe stop my back from hurting all the freakin' time.

Day 12: Go back to India. Hopefully our family trip will work out. Otherwise I intend to go back sometime soon. I'd prefer with my family.

Day 13: Learn to tie a sari correctly. Because it would a neat party trick.

Not all of my 100 days have to be such grandiose things.

Day 14: I love vintage groupies. Groupies from the '60s and '70s, the classic ladies of rock men. I love their clothes their attitudes, and just everything about them. I once tried to write a script about a groupie but it escalated into a completely different story. So I want to finally watch 8 Miles High, the movie about Uschi Obermaier's life. I've admired her for so long because of stuff she's done and it's time to sit down and spend some time with her. Maybe it'll even help shape a new script.

Day 15: I just want to dress like a mod one day and have the long bouncy hair I've always dreamed of. It would be fun.

"Madonna followed the success of Ray of Light with the single "Beautiful Stranger", recorded for the 1999 film Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me's soundtrack."

Day 16: As mentioned before, along with my acting aspirations, I wanted to be a rock star. I love music, I wrote for a number of music sites and magazines and I just love how it has the power to soother, incense, relax, energize and touch upon any emotion worth feeling if you're human. Too bad I can't sing. Too bad that it doesn't matter. I will get up in front of an audience and sing without embarrassment. Bring on the karaoke.

Day 17: Like I said, I love music. I want to help my mother, chairperson of the Borusan Arts and Culture, to help create a music program of music I enjoy listening to. She and he co-workers had the idea and I want to make sure it does happen and that I do contribute.

"Madonna released her eighth studio album, Music in September 2000. The album hit number-one position in more than 20 countries worldwide, and sold 4 million copies in the first 10 days."

Day 18: Ride a horse. I have not ridden since I was little and I'm not much of a horse person. But my dad has a horse and it's one of his greatest loves, horseback rding, and it would be a nice little thing to do together.

"Madonna and Guy Ritchie married in Scotland." After which Madonna adopted England as her home and tried to fit the role of English country lady, all set with a clipped accent and horse-riding accidents.

Day 19: Write a new script. How do I expect to do anything in Hollywood/LA with no products to fence? Commit my new idea to paper/computer and finally have a new script.

Day 20: Edit and make presentable my previous scripts so I have a body of work I'm proud to show off and send to people.

"Later that year, Madonna performed the song "Hollywood" with Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Missy Elliott at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards."

Promise To Try Part 1

Presenting Madonna:

Day 2: Literally channel Madonna and get this thing going.
Defined by lace tops, skirts over capri pants, fishnet stockings, jewelry bearing the Christian cross, multiple bracelets, and bleached hair, Madonna's look became a female fashion trend.

Day 3: Be honest about sex, relationships, all the crap I tend to shy away from because I'm shy. Yes I am, shush I do a very good job of hiding it but it'll be therapeutic to just come out and have all my thoughts on the subject out. I mean, it's not anything wrong, is it? If you answered yes, you probably should stop reading now.
"She performed the song, "Like A Virgin," at the first MTV Video Music Awards, wearing her then-trademark "Boy Toy" belt. The performance is considered as one of the iconic moments in the history of MTV, as is the album Like a Virgin"

Day 4: When I was younger I always wanted to act. It was my big dream, like every other little girl. Well, the ones who didn't dream about getting married or being a princess, we come three categories. I acted all through school and even had the lead in a musical, thus sort of living out my lesser known rockstar dreams, however I came to the swift conclusion that I suck at it all and need to stay far far away. I don't really want to act anymore but I do wish I coul audition for something and maybe see if I could do it. So why not? Audition for student film or something I find (back off craigslist weirdos, I'm doing this the sensible and smart way) and just go for it.
"Madonna entered mainstream films beginning with a brief appearance as a club singer in the film Vision Quest. Its soundtrack contained her second US number-one single "Crazy for You". She also appeared in the comedy Desperately Seeking Susan."

Day 5: I hate getting my picture taken. It literally drives me to the point of tears sometimes. I do not photograph well. And I most certainly would not photograph well nude. So that's not gonna happen ever. But I always admire those fashion blogs that chart day to day outfits of girls and I've always wanted to do that. I even tried to set one up but deleted it before it got going. So I'm going to do a weeklong of my outfits and fashions because I do have a weird/interesting style, if I do say so myself, and I should chart it. No nudity though!
"In July 1985, Penthouse and Playboy magazines published a number of nude photos of Madonna taken in New York in 1978."

Day 6:Along with the sex talk, I should do a "spiritual," talk. It's hard to have liberal friends without them, at some point, damning religion or certain beliefs. I've skirted the issue because I don't want to stir up anything but the truth is, I do believe in something and there's no shame in revealing or talking about it. So I will.
"She debuted her new song, "Like a Prayer" in a Pepsi commercial and also made a music video for it. The video featured many Catholic symbols such as stigmata and burning crosses. This subject matter led the Vatican to condemn the video."

Day 7: Write a book. This is such a big thing and such a short sentence that I don't even know how to explain it. But I would like to one day write a full-length book.

Day 8: I want to just sit down and make my brilliant t-shirt. I've had an idea forever, and Iron Maiden t-shirt but with their mascot Eddie holding a Turkish yogurt drink called ayran and the band name reading Ayran Maiden. It's awesome and I bet I could sell it in Turkey where we don't much care for copyright laws.
"In 1992, Madonna founded her own entertainment company, Maverick, consisting of a record company (Maverick Records), a film production company (Maverick Films), and also music publishing, television, merchandising and book-publishing divisions. The first release from the venture was Madonna's first publication Sex, a book consisting of sexually provocative and explicit images photographed by Steven Meisel."

Day 9: I am going to cut Egg, my kitty's, nails without getting mauled. She's the closest thing I have to a baby and will be for a long time (KNOCK ON WOOD RIGHT NOW). She intimidates me because she hates being touched in the rear parts, because she's a lady, but I will not let my cat be my master.
"On October 14, 1996, Madonna gave birth to her and Carlos Leon's daughter, Lourdes Maria Ciccone Leon."

Day 10: I am going to use my "Teach Yourself Hindi," to teach myself Hindi. I've had it sitting on my dresser for the past year and a half and damn it I will learn elementary Hindi and the Devanagari alphabet. This will be hard, but I will do it. And thus we enter the India portion of Madonna's and my life.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Into the Groove

The universe is already delivering! See, ladies and gentlemen, I made a deal and it went something like this:

Dear Universe,

How are you? Hope you're doing well. Good job on existing for millions of years, boy, that must take some effort. I'm only 24 and some days I just don't want to get out of bed but you, you just keep chugging along, creating galaxies and planets and exploding stars. Really admire your work ethic. Anyway, I have this favor. I'm going to leave L.A. and run away and make the choice of quitting the program but in return you have to make me see it's worth it and teach me not to regret my decisions, okay? Keep being the wonderful, infinite thing that you are and take special care of Earth, it's kind of my favorite one of your creations.

Leyla Hamedi

I admit, I did have regrets. Watching the Golden Globes there was no way of fooling myself otherwise; I love the business of making and writing movies and I do, someday, want to contribute to it. But I'm already 24 and I don't know if it's too late (well, certainly to star in my own films. It's okay, Megan Fox can play me. It's weird, she has a bitch face, she annoys everyone, and by all accounts she should irritate the hell out of me but I just love her). It's times like this that I metaphorically bang my head against the wall and call myself every foul name in the book and some I make up myself i.e. stupid cocking bitch of a fuckhead. But, today as I was walking down the street, I got told I had a very good aura. I know lady, it's because I'm working on getting in sync with the universe, but I appreciate you noticing. Then, I got an email from one of the places I was supposed to intern at in Los Angeles. It was by far my favorite place, a literary agency, and the girl I was in contact with asked me if I was still interested. I was confused, I had already informed them I wasn't staying in the program but we worked out a way for me to intern for them and read books and provide coverage online. AAAAAAHHH! HAHAHAH SUCK IT LA PROGRAM. Thank you universe, as always you are a wise and knowing entity that makes everything work out

On a sad note, boyfriend left today. He has a big important job, very impressive at 25 (yes, I have an older man, weep away women, he is just so mature. Fart jokes are the height of sophistication, don't you know? Well I think they're funny and that's why we're perfect together), that makes him go to far away lands where things habitually explode. I won't see him until May but I went and spent a few days with him in Virginia before he set off. I love you sweetie pie, aren't you sad you're missing my 100 days of crazy?

However, when I landed in Boston, "Cherish," by Madonna was playing and it cheered me quite a bit. Thank you universe, I do cherish the thought of always having you, here by my side.

Give me faith
Give me joy
My boy
I will always cherish you.

Okay enough with the mushy bullcrap. God, I'm half tempted to delete that. I sound like an emo teenager writing bad song fanfiction. Anyway, I have officially started my 100 days of Like A Muse. Tattoo healing nicely, hair looks good, and I'm wearing a cute new little outfit right now. Well, technically I'm in my pajamas (Betty Boop sweatpants and a Whitesnake t-shirt with a naked lady on'em, oh yeah) but I have worn them and I have an '80s-ish sweatshirt dress to wear tomorrow because no one pulls off acid wash like I do. I'm going to start organizing my Madonna timeline and getting it in line with all the goals I have in mind that I keep saying I will do but never get around to. Sometimes, like now, my updates won't be in tune with the project. It'll be me just babbling/writing but I'll still stick to Madonna titles because I think that's cute. Though it might be a stretch sometimes. Like I'm just, "getting into the groove here," getting the project underway. Hence this title. Project days will have Day 1, Day 2 etc. on them to distinguish them and I aim to get through them hopefully by May. Some projects within the project (for example, I already have one parallel worked out. Madonna wrote a series of children's books and I've been batting the idea of writing a short series of my own about my kitty and her travels) might take longer than the alotted 100 days but the important thing is to get them started which where I have the most trouble. Hopefully, they will be complete by the end of the year. No, not hopefully. They will be.


Had to do it once more. I am not a gracious person when I get my way. I will try to improve.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 1: Express Yourself

I'm sitting in the basement of Elliot's, my darling boyfriend's, mom's house in Virginia, playing peekaboo with the softest grey cat. Grace has eyes greener than the emerald earrings Angelina Jolie wore to the 2009 Oscars (I wants them. Her, not so much) and a pert little black nose that makes her look like a '40s bow-lipped movie starlet. If they were in cat form of course. She is a very weird cat in that she will violently head-butt me until I pet her vigorously all over but she hates to be picked up and hugged. She makes me miss my cat Egg. I love my little Egglet. Here she is:
Look at her! She is the cutest, softest little kitty in the world and so beautiful with her inky fur and her yellow moon eyes! I will talk about her often as she is the love of my life and I don't care. You're just jealous. But as this is the Leyla/Madonna project I should probably focus on that now.

So as all Madonna fans, and regular inhabitants of planet Earth, know, Madonna likes to reinvent herself. I am aware that this is somewhat of an understatement. It's like saying, to quote Phoebe Buffay,"Oh Monica, you like things clean." So I can't very well start my transformation without a makeover. Believe it or not this was the boyfriend's idea. A whole new look for a whole new Leyla. Now before you get all up and pissed and huffy and how dare he, feminism, girl power be yourself, I'd like to say I agree with him. There's no better way to get a fresh start than by doing something visually symbolic, like changing your hair or clothes. You're not giving up on your old self, you're just bringing out someone new that's hiding deep in there somewhere. I've always had big curly hair and recently got half of it bleached and though I thought it looked awesome, it killed my hair. I had wiry strinyg kinks instead of regular curls and waves and so I made an appointment with Amy at Vidal Sassoon as soon as I got back from LA and decided to get it cut.

Then I changed my mind.

And then I changed it again.

Did I not mention I'm kind of indecisive? Yeah we're back to Monica likes things clean territory. I am working on it, so bear with me. That is the point of these 100 days.

Finally, I just made up my mind, got up at 8:30 am and chopped all my hair off.

Oh dear. Bye bye length I've been trying to achieve for the past three years. Hey, Amy said it would feel and look a lot better and I trusted her so fuck it. I have short hair again. I haven't had it in over 5 years but with some streaks still in there and all the scraggly parts gone, I now have a little longer than chin-length bob.

I look gooood.

Strutting out of Vidal Sassoon, with non-combover bangs flipping attractively into my face and mouth, I went home to the boy who greeted me with a big hug and declared me a hot ass babe. Aww, he'd read the previous entry. But I didn't just stop there. I needed more. More stuff to help me express myself, my new self. I needed a new outlook on life and hair was just the beginning. So I marched right over to Harvard Square and got a tattoo.

I'm not kidding.

I've wanted a new tattoo for awhile but after my leg tattoos caused one of my other delicious breakdowns I was sort of wary. But I wanted this. I needed it. Okay, so most people mark accomplishments with tattoos or get them on momentous occasions. I say pshaw to them, I'll get one at the end of 100 days if I want too as well, but for now, I have a delicate, swirly and purple (!) ohm on my left wrist. I love you mommy, don't kill me. Plus, now we're connected; you, me and Mina, my sister, all have ohm tattoos. I mean the fact that we share blood and that you heaved us out of your uterus also connect us, but goddammit I wanted my purple tattoo. And the artist John was the nicest man. We had a lovely chat about metal and bands we've seen and how great Iron Maiden is (IRON MAIDEN FOREVER) and he thanked me for being an excellent customer because of my delightful conversation and tolerance for pain. My ohm faces me which means, "for me."

Doing fairly well for myself I decided that even if clothes do not make the man, or woman, they very well should. So off to buy me a new outfit! This sounds like I'm just indulging myself but really, it was the best high. I had no qualms about my hair and about my tattoo and at least one of those things is something permanent and I never felt so sure of myself. Life is looking up already because, "[I] deserve the best in life, so if the time isn't right then move..." hmm. Okay, maybe "Express Yourself," wasn't the best choice as that song basically tells you to depend on a man to make you happy unless he's a moron then you get another one but the sentiment remains true. I am technically expressing myself, just not in relation to a man. But he did start this all off actually, my boyfriend and his makeover suggestion. My God, everything is just connecting already. Too bad all the shops didn't agree with me as I found no cool outfits and everything I tried on either made me look like a pregnant lesbian or bulgy whale woman from bulgy whale world.*

So I headed home, a little deflated but not much. And my spirits soared right back up when a random man on the street yelled, "I like your hair." YES. VALIDATION. I turned to smile at him and say thank you at which point he demanded if I was afraid of black men.


Well sir, am I running away screaming in abject terror at your rather menacing form? No. And thus, we can surmise that no, I am not afraid of black men and I am also no longer smiling at you. No matter, it's movie night.

Man, hanging out with Boston friends, watching Moon (which, coincidentally is my other musical love David Bowie's offspring's directorial debut. It was good. I kept singing, "Is there life on MAAAAARS," in my head though. And, "Ground control to Major Tom. Commencing countdown engines on." And, "There's a spaaaaaace maaaan, waiiting in the skyyy." Oh come on, you make a space-related movie and you're related to Ziggy Stardust. What did you think the audience reaction was gonna be?) and going out to the hipster club is so fun. Hey, I'm playing Madonna, she started in dance clubs like these and after half a bottle of wine and three, maybe four, Jack and cokes later, I see the light. I am so thrillingly, enchantingly, hilariously, brilliantly, madly, wildly, fondly, blissfully, dizzyingly happy I'm not in L.A. and that I am here, in Boston, dancing and drinking to ironically hyped-up dance versions of Joy Division songs. But maybe a bit too dizzyingly. My transformation is now churning up bile in my stomach and the world is spinning so fast my inner Leyla is about to become my outer Leyla.

Yeah I threw up. But I made myself do it if that makes this sound any better (boyfriend says no). I hate going to sleep with the world spinning so I did it. And promptly passed out.

Maybe not the best start, but it's a start.

*I did find nice outfits the next two days. I have two new dresses now hooray.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Like A Dream...

"Why was I your last choice?"

Stupid question. Yes I knew it was a stupid question but I asked it anyway. Why was I the last person my boyfriend landed on, on his quest to find a girlfriend? I liked him from the start why didn't he return the favor? You'd think I was past all this bullshit. Four years and some change into a relationship should mean I am happy, self-satisfied, and even a little smug, deservedly so, as what other 24-year-old girl has the boyfriend I have? And truly, he's wonderful. He was my best friend before my boyfriend and that's the dream right? Well I got it. And still these idiotic niggling thoughts pop into my head and show me once again what a pathetic excuse I am for a human being.

Why is always at night? Why is it when the world is sleeping that us seemingly content and happy girls toss and turn and analyze and come to the conclusion that we're crazy and stupid and hate our lives when in fact, we should be thanking God or whatever higher being we believe in that we have it so lucky. For the record, I do believe there is a higher being; someone who knows what they're doing. Because if I didn't believe everything happened for a reason, well I'd just have kill myself. Except I wouldn't because I don't believe in suicide. Anyway, I am one of those content, happy, and overall lucky girls that's convinced she's barking mad as she spends night after night, awake and sad. I come from a pretty well-off family that's half Turkish and half Iranian. The bonds that tie us puts the fairy tale that was, "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," to shame. We breathe, eat, sleep, and live each other. Which sounds gross but really, we're the most tight-knit, protective, loving group of people that could ever share common blood. On top of this, I'm highly educated, fairly intelligent, have awesome hair when it cooperates, and an excellent taste in music. Yes I am a self-proclaimed heavy metal chick but guess what. I am. So fuck you. Iron Maiden forever. And then there's my boyfriend who any sensible female would take an appreciative glance at and who I find very attractive and who sincerely calls me a hot ass babe. Screw your feminism, in my head where I reign as the smart but weird friend to the hot girl (RIP John Hughes but nothing Molly Ringwald as ever been in compares to my life), I crave to be judged by my looks sometimes.

And yet here I am, pulling an Elizabeth Gilbert as I sit up in my apartment, my amazing, gorgeous apartment located in the heart of Boston on Newbury Street I might add, lamenting how deeply, deeply unhappy I am. Maybe it's something all of us privileged white girls go through but depression is a bitch. Especially when there is no goddamn reason for it. I had my oh-so-delightful first nervous breakdown (yes first, as in, more to come) a few years ago during the summer between junior and senior year of college. Then again after I graduated and started my MFA. Then again the next summer. And now. What the fuck, man. Why me? I went to art school where I had a blast for four years as well as getting degree in Media Arts, I got a masters in screenwriting, and now I have every opportunity to make something of myself in the creative world. Except this is the very reason why I bawled my eyes out, quit an internship program that may have lead me to what I've wanted in Los Angeles, and came crawling back home.

Why am I the last choice? Why was I never asked out in high school? How come all my friends are hotter than me? How come I'm such a failure in my eyes? Can I write? Why do people tell me I can when I don't even know anymore? Why am I so far away from my cat, the only thing that has brought me joy in the past year?

I need to get the fuck over myself. So here we are. I want to be a writer. I want to be heard. Hell, maybe I even want to be a screenwriter but I sure as hell ain't gonna succeed if I don't write so here we go. Time to analyze and take a few steps forward.

Madonna is amazing. I've loved her since I was a kid. Yes I am pulling a non-sequitur much? but it will make sense. See, the stories that I love to read are the stories about people, people like me, women, who have come to a block in their lives, in their, to all outward appearances, perfect lives. They crave more. Eat, Pray, Love and Julie & Julia were the two books from last year that sucked me in and made me cry out (inwardly of course, as I'm a robot who can't express emotion unless I'm having one of the aforementioned breakdowns and leaking tears from every face hole), "This is ME! This is what I feel." This past week in L.A. it all came to a head. I didn't want to be there even though I had worked so hard to get there. I got my driver's license, I applied to my school's post-grad program that helps place students in internships within the industry, I left my kitty with my parents in Turkey, and hauled my ass to California. But that awful feeling happened. Depression affects everyone differently but the way my dark passenger, to quote Dexter, rears her bitch head is by forming a giant lump in my chest and throat, killing my appetite, and thoroughly convincing me that I'm dying and I'm going crazy and I'm the only freak that feels this and the world is ending all at the same time. After teary phone calls with my parents and long, long, often heart-breaking conversations with my boyfriend that I won't rehash here, I up and left L.A. and came back to Boston. After three days. And it all boils down to being afraid and not knowing how I was going to get by alone in a strange city that required driving. Yeah, I'm that hysterical woman from 1930s mystery novels that needs a proper slap to come to her senses.

Enough is enough. Time to fix me. I wasn't happy in grad school because I thought I was wasting my life and now it's 8 months past graduation and I still haven't done anything and I'm 24 and time is running out and I've gained weight, and I'm ugly, and I'm just a worthless person. Well, no happy person I've ever met thinks so harshly of themselves so here is my first step. Learn to love myself. Oh barf, I can't believe I just wrote that. Before I go hug a tree and make a dress out of hemp let me get to my point. I was lying in bed tonight, not sleeping, and got to thinking about Madonna. I've listened to her my entire life and I spent today walking around playing my favorite song, "Like A Prayer," over and over. There's comfort in familiarity and Madonna is my childhood and the bond that connects me to every important female in my life from my mom to my cousins to my sister to my best friends. Lo and behold, "in the midnight hour, [I felt her] power." There was a book I once read by India Knight called My Life On A Plate. In it is a description of the main character, "playing Madonna." Basically, whenever a situation arose that she couldn't handle, that she balked at, that made her uncertain and fearful, she pretended she was Madonna and rode it out with confidence and style. I get that. You see, to us Madonna is the ultimate queen. She's been around forever, she always looks fantastic, she's her own muse, she's got talent and creativity and she has that attitude that you just can't mess with.

I want to do that too.

I mean, I don't literally wanna become Madonna, I have no patience for children and certainly won't adopt any, neither will I dye my hair blonde because being a brunette is the one thing I know I take a glowing pride in. Though my hair right now is very blonde streaked. I was having a Kat Von D, trashy dark with blonde highlights moment. Hey, I pull it off. But I digress. No, I don't want to be Madonna but I would like to play her. I want to face problems head on instead of cowering and taking the easy way out. I want to be successful. I want to look fabulous and know it. So here is my Julie & Julia-esque journey of self-discovery; I will make a concise list of every momentous look and fad Madonna went through and pay homage to it in my daily life. Maybe looking ridiculous will help me get over my self-esteem issues. Maybe it will make them worse. But it's something. I can tackle things that I normally don't like writing daily or on a semi-regular basis, do stuff I never would do otherwise, say off the top of my head, riding horses with self-assured aplomb. Watch out Lulu (my dad's horse), English-version Madonna Leyla is coming. Of course I will document it all here which is the next step in getting me writing. I want to do 100 days of Madonna. Maybe they won't be back to back, but I will have 100 days where I tackle the day as Madonna would do and never look back. I've always wanted to be a muse to someone but that is just a girlish fantasy that will never come true. So Madonna will be my guide to make me the muse I want to be for myself. Sounds egotistical right? Good, I think I need that now.

I warn you though, I tend to ramble when I get going. So I will write a lot. Hopefully. I hope so. Writers should write. I can't say now if it'll be good but by the end I hope I can sincerely say it and mean it, have faith in myself. Now I go crawl back into bed with my gorgeous, wonderful boyfriend who will read this in the morning and either pat me on the back or agree, finally, that I am crazy.

"Like a dream, no end and no beginning."
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