Zinesteritis

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Zinesteritis. Definitely a virus worth spreading!

I planned to have an art night or whatever crafty event with a couple of friends on Tu Bishvat. The friends invited are all mothers (all but one) and living on opposite sides of the country, so finding a time and place for the art event, plus an arrangement for the kids that would work for everyone was tricky, which is why only one friend showed up.

However, it didn’t take away from the awesomeness of the time I had and only served to encourage both me and my friend to try and set a future date where more people would show up. That’s for later. But for now, I was just happy to be creating again.

After spending a rather frustrating night where I couldn’t fall asleep because of my on-and-off problems with insomnia for one thing, and my daughter’s inability to sleep due to intense teething for another, I was sure that this morning’s art endeavor would go down the drain and I would simply fall asleep on my pile of papers and art supplies.

But no. Quite the opposite. I had such a blast, I totally forgot my sleepiness. And in the spirit of zinestering the winter blues away, I even forgot it was winter and just how much I hate it. Not only did I manage to produce several collages for my upcoming silent issue of PMS Perzine, but I also taught my friend how to make a mini zine! It was her first time making a zine and I gave her my copy of Overthrow the Status Quo zine by my friend (which I already wrote about here) for inspiration and to show her that anybody can make a zine. ANYBODY! And she did, and it came out even more amazing than I expected. For a newbie zinester, she wrote one biching zine! She packed so much power into such a small zine, I was totally blown away that this was actually her first shot at zine-production.

Not to mention that she also felt rather proud of herself and proved to herself that yes, she too can make a zine. I totally know what that feels like. I remember the pride I felt when I first held my first zine in my hands. There is no other feeling like it.

“Not only can we make human beings, we can also make zines,” she stated in a coincidental rhyme.

So yes, indeed an awesome, productive and satisfying morning. I can’t wait for the next time I get to engage in badass zinestering, and hopefully have some more people to share it with.

Next up for my silent issue, hand drawings. I’ll try to use color crayons this time.

Peace, love and yes, laundry basket, overthrown.

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All That I Can’t Say

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Last night I had a bitch of a time trying to fall asleep. I was feeling under the weather and tired as hell, but I was tossing and turning for no less than two hours before drifting off into an uneasy, short-lived sleep.

It felt like out of nowhere. I was suddenly hit by an intense case of anxiety like I haven’t felt in years.

Last night was metal night and I was sitting around with a couple of girls, younger than me, who said stuff like “I’m turning 27 soon, that’s so old!”

I barged into their whining and said “I’m going on 33 in October. What does that make me? Dead?”

Frankly, I must say I regret all the times I complained every time my birthday rolled around and I would say “I’m 19, I’m so old!” or “I’m 25, fucking old!” But I do recall being excited for the prospect of turning 30, because for me, 30 means stability. I saw it as a time in your life when everything suddenly falls into place. A time of perfection and organization, when you feel happy and comfy in all areas of your life – financially, psychologically and emotionally. And that’s exactly where I was and what I felt when I turned 30. I completed my therapy with flying colors, I got a wonderful boyfriend who is now my husband, I have my home, my dog, my job, my savings account, my hobbies and my family, all of which I’m so thankful for and happy with. So for the past few years, things could not be better, except for a few medical issues.

But last night, shit just collapsed all around me. I’m going on 33, and although I personally do not think it’s old (even if I went through some medical issues which would indicate otherwise) while the people around me are still in their 20s and complain about it, I felt a terrible hole. Something lacking.

Last night, these girls were talking about their extensive sexual adventures, body modification, eating disorders, while I stayed as silent as a corpse. I had nothing to add because my sexual history started at the ripe “old” age of 20, and the sexual partners I’ve had could be counted on a single hand with one amputated finger. As for bodmod, I am now at the stage of tattoos. I am not getting any more piercings because taking them off and putting them back on once a month every time I go to the mikve is a pain in the ass. And I’ve never had any eating disorders although my body image issues abound.

But it’s other things that I wish I could talk about and tried saying last night a couple of times, but couldn’t get a word in. Because my issues are those that only people like me can understand. My medical issues, old people issues, trying to get pregnant which is not the easiest thing in the world despite what everybody thinks… things that I want to say but can’t because I don’t have a human BFF (my dog is my bestie) who can understand any of it, or at all. And in a world where people think that 27 is old and where all you need to have a baby is fuck, my experiences are worth shit and don’t make any sense. If I tell them that with all the wonderful things I have in my life, all I want is a full uterus, they’ll play fish, completely at a loss for words.

All the friends I had who have had the shred of a potential of being a best friend moved away and cut all contact. The rest of my friends are my husband’s friends, all guys. No offense to the male specie but there is no way in hell that any of them can understand what’s it’s like to want a baby so bad, you’re willing to sacrifice everything you’ve worked so hard for – psycho-emotional wellbeing, money, relationships, health, all the perfection I reached at age 30 – just to have one, and then to find out that even conceiving will be a bitch, and feeling like half a woman as a result.

And with that, I started crying, rolling around in bed in a mound of anxiety mixed with paralyzing fear and loneliness I have never felt before.

I see the kids on the bus, the mothers with the strollers, the pregnant women, the toddlers with their smiles full of milk teeth, and I can’t stop staring and wishing and wanting so bad. So bad.

Peace, love and health. Only health.

The Beautiful People in My Beautiful Life

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You know, I’ve heard of people talking about someone in their life who makes them into a better person or made their life better.

“I feel like a better person, and I enjoy my life a lot more when I’m around Mr. XYZ,” they would say. But I never actually thought that made any sense. You’re either a good person or you’re not. You’re the master of your own fate.

But then I met someone who improved my life so drastically that it did in fact make me a better person. I married him.

I know that sounds corny but it’s true. I just thought about my life before I met Elad and after I met him and noticed so many things that changed for the better.

The first thing I changed thanks to the man is my job. I had the most awful job on the planet. When I met Elad, he realized that not only does this job take up all of my time (that was a 50 hours a week job), and that I have no social life as a result, but that it also sabotages my psycho-emotional state because the boss was a verbally and emotionally abusive motherfucker, and I would come back home crying on a regular basis. Elad told me to quit on several occasions but I was afraid that I would not find another job and get into debt as I did when I quit that job once before and was forced to come back because I was flat broke.

“So go look for another job, and quit once you find one,” said Elad. “You don’t owe this guy anything, not even a two weeks notice.” Arch Enemy inspired me, but Elad gave me the final push, and I did indeed find a better job and I quit that godawful place with a self-satisfied grin on my face. No two weeks notice. Nothing. And now, I have the best job ever (20 hours a week), nice staff, awesome boss, who I actually invited to my wedding and signed as a witness.

Also, thanks to Elad, I get to travel more – Since we met, we’ve been to Belgium, Holland, France, Italy and Germany, and we also took a road trip to Eilat. This summer, we’re going to Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Montreal.

I go out a lot more – to bars, mostly on Metal Night, restaurants, parks, concerts, the beach…

I have more friends, most of whom I met through Elad and our shared love of metal.

I HAVE A DOG! Did you get that?! Thanks to my husband, I have a life and can finally afford to have a dog.

I have a rich and vibrant social life. My psycho-emotional state has never been better, not to mention my sex life. I’ll spare you the details, but I’ve experienced things with Elad that I have never experienced with any other partner or even myself.

I take better care of myself, I cook more, I eat better, I exercise more, and meditate more often. I have become a better person.

I also have a chance to be more creative. Because my job is so convenient, and because it’s part-time, I have more time for my arts, crafts and zine production. Now I may sometimes get lazy on that aspect. I mean, since I started my PMS zine in 2010, I only released 10 issues. That’s two issues a year, which is nothing.

And that brings me to the next person who made my life better – my Salem friend. Because ever since I met her, which was barely six months ago, I already released two issues of PMS, one of which was a split zine with her, and we have plans for two more split zines way before this year is over, plus extra art projects that I made (postcard designs, button designs, a contribution for her zine, ongoing letters and packages we exchange back and forth), as well as the International Zine Month I am planning on doing this July including another 24-Hour Zine. So this year, I will have released at least five issues of PMS, three of which will be split zines with my friend.

Thanks to her, I feel more inspired and my creativity took on whole new proportions that I never even thought possible. Laziness is no longer on the bill. Seriously, I wish all my friends were as enthusiastic about zines as she is. Maybe if they were, we could finally have an Israeli zine fest that I am so longing for.

So corny or not, I’d like to extend a sincere thank you to my husband and my Salem friend for intertwining in my web of karma, thus improving my life as a feminist and as a person, and I’d also like to thank the Forces that Be for making our roads intersect.

You guys rule!

Peace, love and on a completely unrelated note, come on Summer! Get a move on and get here already!

All that Glitters Is Gore

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My head is on the verge of explosion. And if it does explode, what will come bursting out will not be blood and brains and gore, but rather glitters and confetti and sprinkles. Because I am so goddamn fucking happy right now. And while I was thinking I might just be PMS’ing (because the timing is right) I have some pretty good reasons to be going mad with joy.

Split Zine Coming Together

My friend from the Land of the Witch (a.k.a. Salem, MA) just sent me her part of the split zine we are writing together. My boyfriend is at his office and should be scanning my part of it any minute now. And when I get home today, I will be working my ass off (quite literally because my ass tends to go numb when I sit at the computer for too long) to put it together and hopefully have it printed by some time next week. I can’t wait to finally hold it in my hands and read it and absolutely enjoy every tiny bit of it!

Letter-Writing

Same friend sent me a package saturated with zines and a sweet letter. So once I figure out how to manage my time, or once I feel like my ass is really screaming bloody murder, whichever one comes first, I’ll write back a nice long letter, soaking with exclamation marks and happy faces.

Zine Plans

I think I’ll write the metaphor issue of the PMS zine sometime between my wedding day and my honeymoon. Said events are separated by a little over two months so that should give me plenty of time. Waiting to continue working on this issue only serves to build up my excitement for it even more. So add more sparkles to the glittery fire!

Zine Fest Plans

Yes, you read that right. Zine FEST plans. Israel is seriously lacking in those. And so, since most zine fests take place abroad, and while my boyfriend and I are planning to honeymoon in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Montreal, should there be zine fests in those cities around that time, then I should be there too! And my Salem friend said there’s a good chance of that happening, and if it does, we’ll table together. And if that’s not reason enough to stretch my smile all the way to the back of my head, I don’t know what is! I’m already thinking about making some extra copies of my zines and what to wear on that day, if that day does in fact come.

Video Camera Fun

I recently bought a little digital video camera. And I also got this free video editing program online. Maybe if I figure it all out, I could even make a short film about something. Making short films is the only kind of art I’ve never really experimented with. I’m very excited to try it out, and if it works out, I’ll be singing the Ren & Stimpy Happy Joy song and bounce around to the beat.

It must be noted that, as I wrote some time ago, we plan and God laughs. So I’ll try real hard to keep my glitters contained until all the pieces fall together and I’m actually in the process of experiencing all these extreme-excitement-inducing events. And I hope that if the Goddess is laughing right now, then it’s because She is happy for me and is also planning on making all this stuff happen, and the sparkly confetti can go bursting right out.

Peace, love and twinkle twinkle black star (metal is always exciting)

Engage the Metalhead Within

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20141116_225604Well, I had plans for a new tattoo, and I had plans for a new zine, and I had plans to not have another surgery at least until this year is over. But plans are made to be changed. So here it is.

I am set to have another surgery on November 30. It will be my fourth one this year but it will be relatively minor… I hope. It has nothing to do with my elbow injury or my cataract but I won’t detail this procedure beyond that, considering its sensitive nature.

Onto more happy plans, I plan on getting married! My boyfriend and I got engaged last week. We went and picked out a ring together and we’re starting to look at wedding halls this evening. I hope to set a date for early March, but my boyfriend is leaning towards the end of June, so we’re still undecided on that.

Last night, we went to our weekly ritual at Blaze Bar – Sunday Metal Night. A night of good company, drinks, face-melting metal tunes and intensive neck breaking. What we didn’t expect was the surprise the Jerusalemite metalheads had in store for us. They ordered cake, balloons and champagne to celebrate our engagement, and their plans on that night was no doubt to get us completely wasted. They managed to do that with me, but seeing as I went a little overboard a few weeks ago and spent the rest of the night being tortured by stomach acid wreaking havoc on my throat and nasal passages, I took it easy this time around and stopped when I felt I had enough – two glasses of champagne, one very very light cocktail and two very very light chasers.

As for my boyfriend (I hate the term fiance), he got the old stomach utterly upset. Mr. Stomach then decided to pull a Jim Breuer and kicked all the ingested guests right the fuck out. So said plastered boyfriend spent his night as I did a few weeks ago, then he had to be carried out of the bar and back home by cab who had to be paid twice the amount of cash we usually pay, because the driver was reluctant to take in a guy who might very well vomit up and down the car.

So the night ended in disaster (I was pretty upset too seeing my boyfriend in that condition) but the night itself was fucking awesome! They played the best metal tunes, I got my headbang going at full throttle the moment all the “congrats” had passed around, we had about two or three dozen l’Chaim’s throughout the night, chasers and hugs on the house… it was quite possibly one of the best metal nights Jerusalem has to offer.

After the wedding, we plan to go to North America for a couple of weeks. And later on we also plan on having children, but that’s still a bit far off. And if the metalheads throw us a baby shower, the bar ought to be smoke free and alcohol free… not much of a party, eh?

Zines and tattoos will eventually be done, but with all the wedding arrangements, they’ll be on hold for now.

Peace, love and SLAYERRR! \m/

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No Regrets

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The website Nego Sentro posted a list of 37 things I’ll regret when I’m old. I’m not old yet, but as a person who doesn’t believe in regrets, I still wanted to know just how right or wrong these people are.

As it turns out, I am still a person who doesn’t believe in regret and these people are full of shit.

1. Not traveling when you had the chance.

I am travelling at least once a year. In the past three years I’ve been to Belgium, Holland, France and Italy. In the past, I’ve been to Poland, Switzerland and several places in the States and Canada, and will soon go to Germany. Further potential destinations include Scandinavia and China.

2. Not learning another language.

I already know three languages, Hebrew, French and English, and am currently in the process of learning German.

3. Staying in a bad relationship.

I can’t say I’ve ever been in a bad relationship. And right now, I’m in a great one. So yeah.

4. Forgoing sunscreen.

Never happened.

5. Missing the chance to see your favorite musicians.

There are many bands/artists who performed when they were not yet my favorite. Once they became my favorite, they either died or stopped performing. Many, i.e. not all. I have seen Arch Enemy a few times, King Diamond once and will see him again, Ozzy once, and I go to European metal fests whenever good bands are on the bill. Next up is Wacken where I am looking forward to Amon Amarth and Carcass among others.

6. Being scared to do things.

Things? What like skydiving and bungee jumping? It’s not only because I’m scared but also because I have no interest in extreme sports. Watch horror movies and riding rollercoasters? Been there. Tattoos and body piercings? Done that. Be a little more specific and I’ll decide if I’ll regret it or not.

7. Failing to make physical fitness a priority.

Integral Tai Chi is my weekly thing. And it’s good shit. And even when you’re old, you can do yoga or martial arts or whatever you want. Age is not an issue when it comes to fitness. You ever seen those wrinkly old men who go jogging in the mornings?

8. Letting yourself be defined by gender roles.

You’re talking to a feminist. Try again.

9. Not quitting a terrible job.

I did that three times in my life, and am now pretty damn happy with my job.

10. Not trying harder in school.

I never had to try too hard to get good grades. I was smart.

 

11. Not realizing how beautiful you were.

That’s actually true. In my teens, I kept complaining about bad hair days and unmanageable messy curly hair. Today, I miss that head of hair and keep wishing I would get back my curls. However, today I appreciate my looks more than before. I especially love my belly and my chest. I got a good body, and I take care of it.

12. Being afraid to say “I love you.”

I did and still do say it. I was not afraid of it.

13. Not listening to your parents’ advice.

I’m mostly a good girl. If I don’t take my parents’ advice on one thing or another it’s because I know what’s good for me and what isn’t. I took my mom’s advice to eat red meat and spent the rest of the day on the toilet as a result. I know what my body needs. No more red meat for this girl.

14. Spending your youth self-absorbed.

I don’t think that is something to regret. I think it was a necessity. In my teens, I knew I was cold and selfish. I admitted it to myself and my family, and I was happy about it. Today, I don’t regret it because I see it as a necessary part of my psychological development. I saw it as a means of self-preservation, and it was super important to me at that stage in my life.

15. Caring too much about what other people think.

Actually, I never cared about it when I was younger. The older I get, the more I start to care, for other people, not for myself. But yeah. Most of the time, I don’t give a shit.

16. Supporting others’ dreams over your own.

What? Oh, maybe it’s for people who have kids and don’t support them when they pursue their dreams and shit. I’m not there yet.

17. Not moving on fast enough.

Physically? These people really need to get their shit together and start making more sense or being more specific… I think that these days, things are moving way too fucking fast. I like to stop and take my time and live in the moment. It reduces my level of stress and improves the quality of my life. I just don’t see how I’ll regret that.

18. Holding grudges, especially with those you love.

I rarely hold grudges. And with those I love, they tend to fade away pretty quickly.

19. Not standing up for yourself.

Sometimes, standing up for myself involves getting into a fight. So if not standing up for myself means avoiding a fight, I go for the cleaner of the two. And I never regret thwarting a fight.

20. Not volunteering enough.

I volunteer in my own way. I contribute my time and efforts to the Jerusalem Rape Crisis Center in several ways. I volunteer as a freelance reporter sometimes. I volunteered at the JSPCA once. I think I’ve done enough.

21. Neglecting your teeth.

I removed my labret to keep my teeth healthy. That was a major sacrifice, dude. And yes, I do brush, I do floss, and I go for yearly cleaning. My teeth will fall out eventually. No matter how much I take care of them, they will end up in a cup of water by the end of the day. This is part of being old.

22. Missing the chance to ask your grandparents questions before they die.

Done that. And what the people who compiled this list are forgetting is that grandparents will probably talk your ears off about their life and about “the good old days” without you asking them anything.

23. Working too much.

Ha! Not. I got lots of hobbies and I have a rich social life. I work when I’m at work and I’m very good at the skill of taking a break, taking a nap, take the time to cook and eat and meditate. No regrets there.

24. Not learning how to cook one awesome meal.

I know how to cook several awesome meals. So y’all can eat it. No regrets yet again.

25. Not stopping enough to appreciate the moment.

See number 17. Consistency, people!

26. Failing to finish what you start.

I can’t think of a single thing that I started and didn’t finish… I started learning German in university and didn’t take any further lessons until just recently. But I am committed to it now and I will finish it. Duolingo helps a lot.

27. Never mastering one awesome party trick.

I’m not much of a party person. So party tricks are not my thing. I rather go to a live show and headbang till my neck gets sore.

28. Letting yourself be defined by cultural expectations.

I don’t. Although in my culture, people love to tell me how to run my life, how to talk, how to dress, what to eat, when to marry, how many kids to have – none of that has any effect on me. I don’t know how these people never get tired of bugging the hell out of me with no results to show for it.

29. Refusing to let friendships run their course.

Done that more times than I can count.

30. Not playing with your kids enough.

Not there yet.

31. Never taking a big risk (especially in love).

A big risk? Depends what you consider to be a big risk. If dating someone I met online is a big risk, then I took it. Twice. If having unprotected sex is a big risk, I also took it. Three times.

32. Not taking the time to develop contacts and network.

“Networking may seem like a bunch of crap when you’re young.” It still seems like a bunch of crap. And I’m doing pretty good for myself. So there.

33. Worrying too much.

Nope. I take it easy.

34. Getting caught up in needless drama.

See previous question.

35. Not spending enough time with loved ones.

I live with two loved ones – my boyfriend and my dog. And I visit other loved ones (parents and family) every other weekend. That’s pretty good considering other people who see their loved ones once a month or only on holidays or never.

36. Never performing in front of others.

I did that a couple of times! Haha!

37. Not being grateful sooner.

I think that every time I overcome another hurdle, I become more and more grateful. Quitting my awful job, going through therapy, finding a great boyfriend and lover, getting a dog, living in Jerusalem, travelling, being happy… I’m grateful for all that. After I was diagnosed with Myotonic Dystrophy, and later after I broke my elbow I started appreciating my body more. Being grateful that I can still walk, talk, move without much effort, function perfectly fine in my daily life, and do so much more than other people in my condition could only wish to do. Also, during my weekly Tai Chi exercises, the final part is meditation and it involves the “stage of appreciation,” where you need to think of two good things that happened in the last 24 hours, no matter how small. The instructor says “a grateful heart is a happy heart.” And I’m pretty damn happy.

Regrets are a waste of time. Appreciate the past, live in the moment and believe in the future.

Peace, love and a bunch of other zen shit.

IZM – Day 25: Teach a Friend About Zines

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The truth is that on that day, I didn’t do what I planned. The 1-page zine I made on Day 23 was a mini-greeting-zine. A sort of a greeting card I made for my friend’s pre-wedding party, a Moroccan traditional party known as Henna. I planned to tell the people attending the Henna about zines and about International Zine Month and read them the greeting zine I made for my friend. But then, I changed my mind when I saw the size of the crowd at the party. There were too many people, and besides, the focus of the party was on my friend and her groom, of course. So I dropped the idea, and just gave my friend her greeting zine.

Instead, my boyfriend and I played guitar and sang a couple of songs at the party. And I also told another friend of mine who was at the party a little about International Zine Month.

As promised, here are a couple of pictures of the 1-page zine I made.

DSC02465 DSC02466Peace, love and Hennas are totally swell