BELIEVE IT OR NOT ! But I started this website project a whole 5 years ago, just before I turned 24 and shortly after my first music tour. Deetz and I had traveled up and down the west coast playing shows amidst torrential downpour, the presidential inauguration and it's subsequent protests, the immediate aftermath of the ghostship fire, probably other things. It was SUCH an intense time and our set throughout was heavy and slow within a forest of fake trees and clouds and dim lighting. I told everyone that clapping wasn't necessary, and they could lie down and close their eyes if they wanted. This wasn't planned, but something that evolved naturally out of just feeling the pain and fear in every room we ended up in, and that communal calm we invoked felt really powerful at it's best moments. I flew home into the protests at the airport and felt invigorated and excited about the potential of a life and art practice that was in opposition to the things that got us to that point. So, among other things, I moved into this domain and started to take coding seriously and slowly started building some sort of home for my art. Now it's my only spot ! And it's very cozy and I really like it here :)
In all seriousness though, focusing on this website has really helped me undo alot of destructive art habits and helped me focus on a "practice" that is true and healthy. This speaks to the manifesto I had on here circa 2018 / 2019 :
Speaking of Kate Bush ! I hadn't heard this song at the time I wrote that, but I recently decided that the Directors Cut version of "Deeper Understanding"
is for sure the theme song to this site !
Until I totally gave up trying during summer 2020 I had always, always struggled with fitting myself into the larger web based platforms. The only time I've ever seen this feeling articulated well is in an interview with Morgan Vogel in Altcomics #4 where she says :
I don't represent myself as an artist on social media but I watch what other people are doing, and I feel special bitterness about the significance and complexity with which some of my artistic peers are able to implicate their bodies or personalities in their practice, versus my need for invisibility and my feeling that my showing my body would be pathetic. I feel conflicted in this desire to remove my body from my practice, versus my awareness that there is nothing significant or new to say at this moment that does not implicate the body and that the dematerialization of the body is a page or archetypal feint of patriarchal discourse. I often feel the desire to express myself as if I were someone else.
Making this website and just having my own place gave me a freedom that was sorely needed. So in the early days it mostly functioned as a sort of rudimentary blog / public presence, here are some highlights :
I was traveling constantly at the time and keeping a list of all the places I was eating at on the road. I'm...."picky" but mostly in that I'm not interested in eating at fancy / chain vegan places and just want a place that's going to give me a ton of veggies and maybe even some tempeh/tofu. So I started a list that grew into the "popular" but now defunct Vegan Food Guide, itself based on my fave website Swimmingholes.org
. Hopefully I will get myself together and the food guide will come back ! Til then, here are some of those entries :
Also, just for fun here are two reviews I wrote that both say "hell yes" but never got published !
Woooooow ! Probably the most glamorous place in this whole list ? I only went to
one location, in Kensington, and it was "Art Deco" in a nice way - if you're into
that ! The basis of Dishoom is to replicate a certain style of cafe in Bombay that
was popular in the mid 1900's but has slowly faded from view since. You've got to
ask for the specific vegan menu but that's no prob, and damn you're gonna love
it!!! The Chole Puri ? Hell yes. ALSO: they place specific importance on fans slowly
turning around the room, and as someone who usually DOES NOT LIKE fans I've
got to say that if fans are going to be turned on at all that is the best speed ! OK
anyways, perfect spices and textures and flavors here, highly recommended !!!
Unit Su Vege (Philly)
Hell yes, this is what I'm talking about ALL the time ! I got really into coming here
on colder days and warming up with some tea and dim sum. Incredible happy and
warm feelings through my whole body, so so so nice. I also love that they have a
beautiful jumbo bok choy made of glass by the cash register. That's just classy !
The only bummer with this place is that the first night I went it was time for
dessert and I tried to get the Water Chestnut Cake and they were all out ? so then I
ordered the Snow Fungus soup and they were all out of that too ? ? Is there some
sort of shortage ? Or was I just there on a night where everyone before me got all
the good desserts ? Guess I'll never know for sure :(
By early 2020, before the complete overhaul that led to this current design, the website was looking like this :
The "I'm Stressed Out" page, which I believe went up in late 2018, was my favorite. Definitely my cutest idea at the time :
And I've even recreated the rock gong for you here in 2022
! HIT THE ROCK TO BEGIN YOUR BATH
♥ That's it for the anniversary celebration ♥
If you've made it this far....that's amazing ! Thank you ! I hope you stick with me and this strange obsession I have for the next 5, 10, 15, however many more years !
♥ Ana ♥