14 February 2012

happy v-day lovers.

My first boyfriend was named Jackson. We “dated” when I was three. We attended the same local swimming pool and I broke up with him when he squirted my friends with his water gun. I’ve always wondered if maybe I peaked too early. It would be insufficient to say that I wasn’t interested in anyone for the many years that followed because that certainly isn’t true. I recall a bad boy named Nathan in my earliest of elementary years who wore a little kid’s black leather jacket. He would pitch such a fit that he would get sent to the principal’s office more often than he was in class. He would refuse to leave his seat and therefore would be simply scooted down the hall, still glued to his chair. What a badass.

Then there was a boy named Josh. Around the pink linoleum tiles of my cafeteria, there I was- a crushing little third grader. He would do anything to get into trouble. We used to have silent lunches every now and again, when the up and ups thought we were all getting too excited for the next candy-related holiday. When silent lunch went down, the lights were turned off; we were to sit in alphabetical order with one seat in between ourselves and whoever was beside us. Somehow, Josh was assigned to sit right in front of me. The punishment was hated. Suddenly, a few minutes into it, Josh became our fearless leader as he silently plowed down two sandwiches, packed with so much egg salad between the two white slices of bread that it crammed down his throat even faster – the eggs acting as a slick lubricant, mashed with their mayonnaise and mustard fluff. He ate it so fast that in one swift second, he was ralphing.

He puked everywhere. There was total outrage, the cries of disgust, the horrifying realization that the egg salad looked exactly the same sitting on the black table, spilling over onto the pink linoleum as it had when he was eating it– it was mass hysteria. The lights were instantly flicked back on; my classmates were jumping out of their seats, swiping up their lunch materials. Josh was whisked away, in my mind he was handcuffed, but that totally didn’t happen. I hopped up too, but I stood in awe of the boy who ended silent lunch.

In elementary school, I had short, chin-length hair and bangs. My freckles were my calling card and I thought I was so funny, but I talked too much. I got marks for talking too much. I got ice-cream taken away for talking too much. You see, I would buy my lunch as usual and always pick up a tiny plastic container of strawberry ice-cream and a little wooden spoon. By the time lunch was over, I had talked too much and all I was interested in eating and all I had time for was my ice-cream. I had the best kindergarten teacher anyone could ask for. Although her teacher’s aide– I still believe – had it in for me. She caught onto me tossing out my green beans, corn niblets, and empty ice-cream carton and told my mom.

I found out the next day, as my little, slightly pudgy arms reached out for a strawberry ice-cream cup that I had been forbidden to eat ice-cream for the rest of the month. It was taken away.

I should have risen up. I should have returned to school the next day with a huge carton of strawberry ice-cream. I should have melted it down and put it in a water gun and squirted her. I should have refused to leave my seat as I sat eating it. I should have eaten so much that I puked sweet strawberry cream.

But I didn’t.

It’s a funny thing to reflect on being a little kid. I can relate to who I was then more than I can relate to who I have been recently. I hope my lot in life is to return to who I was before I took the ice-cream punishment. Back when I was transfixed by bad boys and wanted to do something stupid, yet totally daring.

A Letter to Me from Little KB:

Things could be worse. It is important to remember, Katie Beth, that things could always be worse. You could have no legs, you could have no heart, you could have no love, and you could have no start. You’re on the very brink of life. You want to see everything. You want to write something, anything, for anyone, any time. You want to pick who you love.

But what is holding you back? Nothing should, not at this point. Your brain is amazing. Your thoughts are great. The way you know you can love someone else has only been tapped into, just barely drizzled.

Sure there are people who will bring you down, people who will confuse you, betray you, and make you feel like you aren’t magnificent. Who cares?

You need to squirt people with water guns. You need to pitch a fit and refuse to leave your seat. You need to puke egg salad. You need to eat strawberry ice-cream.

Love always,

Little KB (hypothetically, of course)

I started this blog with a Valentine’s Day post. I’ve been through many things since I typed those words, but I believe the same things. I believe that love is two lesbians sharing a diet Mountain Dew in a Philosophy class. I believe that those two girls had to overcome a shit-ton of stupidity to get where they are now. I hope they’re doing well.

For a day solely dedicated to people we love, I am going to spend it with myself. I am going to quietly reflect on how much has happened since I started my little blog two years ago. I’m going to think about who I’ve always wanted to be. I’m going to remember who I was when I was little. And I’m going to listen to my heart. You should, too.

Oh, and by the way. Bon Iver won some Grammy-time. Called it.

Happy V-Day Lovers

Yours, mine, & ours,

katie beth

05 January 2012

inspiration & doll parts.

is pretty neat.
One of my Christmas gifts this year came from my mother who bought me a bag full of books on writing. Included in that bag was a copy of the Inspiration Issue of Poets & Writers literary magazine. The article about Polly Becker's artwork was written by Kevin Larimer.

She doesn't need much more than her sketchbook, old photos, and doll parts to create little bits of artwork. She takes the old photos and places them at the head to make a sort of throwback macabre paper doll which eerily captures both whimsy and thoughtfulness. She is Polly Becker and she is pretty neat.

It's the sort of artwork that goes with any type of music. I can enjoy it just the same while listening to anything. It's classical, it's girly pop, it's grungy, it's hip. I believe I have discovered my own personal holy grail of eye candy. And it tastes like pink strawberry peppermints.

Furthermore, if you get a chance to click through the assemblages of Polly Becker, I suggest listening to a shuffle of your tunes, which wouldn't work if you only own the same types of music, but I do believe it brings out the different bits and pieces - shows their personalities.

Polly Becker's clients include:


The Atlantic Monthly

The New Yorker

Farrar Strauss & Giroux


MCA Records


The New York Times Magazine
Reader’s Digest

Rolling Stone
Sony/CBS Records



Visual Dialog

If someone handed me a Barbie doll right now, I know I would still play with it for a bit. I know I would still urge to fashion dresses out of Kleenexes and ribbons. Polly Becker's work is like a grown-up Barbie doll and I love it.


katie beth