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Archive for July, 2010

Inside The Tree Sanctuary

July 31, 2010 By: admin Category: Boo-Yah, Coal, Faith, Family, Filmmaking, Happiness, Health, Living, Love, Meditation, Mom, PlumTV

“Love of beauty is Taste. Creation of beauty is Art.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

I’m stealing the use of this quote from a beautiful blog I found courtesy of someone on Twitter.

This morning I slept late. Really late for me. 9:30am. I’d gotten up at the customary 5:30, but was having trouble opening¬† my eyes. As I padded to the bathroom in the gray light I felt the walls so I wouldn’t fall down the stairs. I felt heavy. Really, really heavy and knew I was going to go back to sleep. I was so happy at the prospect because that hasn’t happened in well over two years.

When I crashed, I crashed hard. Heavily. It was the grounded, in the ground, rooted sleep of a changed woman. Evolutionary change always happens for me while I’m doing something else, and so I don’t ever realize what’s happened until later. The sound of the TV was what finally got me up, my eyes to reluctantly open. My show was on and there were people in my house watching it. I went downstairs to join them.

Each week Dad & Sarah have generously sat and watched the show and graciously given feedback afterward. In the last couple of weeks, though, they haven’t given any feedback, and the reason is because the show is good. As I sat beside everyone today, watching them watch, I could hear them listening and it was awesome. And when a specific, funny moment happened, everyone chuckled, unaware that they were sitting with the producer. For them, they were just watching an engaging show.

It was a good start to what has been a deep day. I didn’t do any soul searching, rather, I did a lot of soul listening. I meditated for over an hour with the intention of finally letting the Universe flood into my mind. Well, she did, and with her came answers. A letting go, a courage to be quiet, and a bunch of ideas for how to finish the coal film. From there the day was like those days I used to have before I got into relationships: present, comfortable, mine. I looked hard at my tendency toward self-criticism and knew there was a lot more work to do there.

I took a short walk into the open field on our property and turned to look at our house from a different perspective. While sitting in the hammock, a place I frequent every weekend, I was struck by an urgency to see things differently. I thought that if I shook up my visual comfort, more changes would follow. They did.

I looked up at the trees, the scrub oak that I love so much, that surround our house. And I realized that God, Mom, all life, and all the answers were in the trees because they were beautiful. I realized for the first time in decades that Beauty is the portal to happiness and understanding, but you’ve got to have the balls to try to make beautiful things.

My silly little lifestyle show is beautiful, and all I need to do now is to stay out of it’s way. If it gets bored and needs something new to liven it up, I’ll develop a new segment. The show and I are one and each know what’s best for the other. Similarly, I will honor the coal film, and my own life and capacity for love. I will get out of my own way. Via Beauty.

The History of Boo-Yah

July 24, 2010 By: admin Category: Boo-Yah, Living, Love, Meditation, Molly, Mom

It’s not because I just watched the trailer for the much-anticipated ‘EAT. PRAY. LOVE” starring one of my original girl-crushes, Julia Roberts. It’s that I really need to fucking get away. But not away from the island or even away from Boston, I need to get away from comfort. I need to barter with life outside of the constant care-taking nature of the first world. And I need to do it before I fall in love again because once I shack up my heart it’s much harder to leave at a moment’s notice to go to places that might be dangerous. Plus, whoever she is, I’m just not the type to want to leave my squeeze. That’s why breakups are such a bitch for me… Ugh…

India with Molly was amazing. Third world and my best girl. But I was still buffered by Alison, Bryan, David, and especially, Nandini. I made “Soma Girls” in a brothel in Calcutta, yes, but I was literally and figuratively looking at those lives through a lens. My next challenge has to be without recording device or the internet. Just a phone, money, my wits, food and friends are what I need at the moment, and so I’m officially putting that out into the universe.

I feel unchained for the first time since I was very little. Unchained from Mom, unchained from a relationship. Now all I need to do is get rid of my ex’s cats and rug, and get someone normal to live in my house for a year. Will it be only one year? I’m old enough to know that length of time is all too short, and so we’ll see.

And where do I wish to go, you ask? I have no idea. All I know is that it’s probably going to be someplace I’ve never thought of and know nothing about. I’ll have to master a new language, learn to cook the local fare, and take a job I’ve never done.

The feeling of finally being unchained is incredible. It came with my fantastic co-worker and boss at the gig here on island leaving to move to New York to work in the corporate office of the same company. It gives me comfort that we’re still attached in some way because I think we need to work together again because it went so well here, but I’m thrilled she’s not in charge of me anymore. I’m happy taking over the show–it feels organic to be making something like this–but it’s not the last stop on the train. This isn’t the way I want to grow, necessarily. And so I’ve got to crank on the coal film and the others I have in mind. If I’m going off on some big trip “The Dirty Truth About Coal” and “18 Months” have to be done and living their own lives before I go.

I think a lot about Egypt. Probably because it’s one of the places Mom always wanted to visit, but never had the guts to. I need to make that trip for both of us. It’s not such a bad idea: going to the places my mother didn’t get a chance to.


July 17, 2010 By: admin Category: Love, Meditation, Molly

This weekend marks my first two shows without Hannah. I crafted the show, worked with the production staff, directed the host shoot, and slammed the things together in the final edit. So this weekend is all on me and it feels… great. :)

Watching the final edits yesterday before the shows went to air was a profound experience. I kept looking for mistakes, moments of bad pacing, and there weren’t any.

In my last post I wrote about reaching a peak with the show that will never be repeated. In fact that’s not true. I was writing from a place of paranoia because I was entering the first week in which I’d be producing the whole show on my own. Now that that hurdle is past I can see clearly that the shows WILL, in fact, get better and better. It will be a collective effort, as it always is, and will be possible because of the incredible team that Hannah put together.

Today, after watching the show on air, I also had a revelation about Molly: no amount of my wishing it will ever make her be someone with whom I can have a normal relationship, and so my only recourse is to let go. Really and truly. Every fiber of my being cries out with this decision, but also provides the much-needed doorway to a bit of salvation, as I’ve been learning through my meditation practice. Feelings, especially the bad, uncomfortable ones, have enormous power. One of the very destructive aspects of our repressed culture is that we’re taught to fear bad feelings and to run away from them when the truth is that all the answers to your questions can be found within those bad feelings.

When I read her latest email this morning I knew there would never be anything I could do to have her be a part of my life. And so I’m taking the sadness of that realization and bringing it up close. There’s nothing like being naked and vulnerable in front of a profound sadness and standing up to it. One day, it’s power will fade and I’ll emerge even further, but for now, this tiny step is enough. You’ve got to walk before you can fly.


July 10, 2010 By: admin Category: Happiness, Living, PlumTV, Video

From the summit it’s all down hill.

Yesterday was the pinnacle of how good our show can be given current constraints. Every week I’m amazed that Hannah and I are able to design and then something given the obstacles, which are mostly time-related. Last night I described my typical week as being a macrocosm of a typical Monday at Plum Daily on the Vineyard… On Monday morning I’m refreshed and excited to work on the show for that week; by lunch I’m worn out, freaked out, and pretty much feeling as if we’ll never get it done without leaving bodies on the ground. When I leave that night, I want to quit. :)

This past week’s show doesn’t have the best content we’ve ever made, but it’s got some great stuff. The thing about this week’s show is that it’s just GOOD. Sure, there are warts all over the place, but as of yesterday I can tell that the production formula is working, and, to be honest… I’m addicted.

I always knew I’d come back to broadcast, and was fairly sure I’d end up at some point doing lifestyle TV. What I never knew was that I’d be producing an entire show, and, when you think about it, and entire SERIES. By the time I leave the island in September, I will have produced 16 30-minute episodes of “Plum Daily: Martha’s Vineyard.” Somebody do the math…¬† That’s 480 hours of television. Am I having show pride? OH FUCK YES, I AM.

Having said all that, though, I have to come back to the blog post title: Summit. When something gets this good you know it, and if you’re smart you acknowledge it in the moment, let yourself feel good, and then let it go, because the one thing I can’t do is expect for the show to please me this every week that’s coming. There will, inevitably, be episodes where I fuck up real bad. I’m hoping they’ll be few, but if I rest on my laurels too long, I’ll miss something–some tiny, tiny thing–that makes the show great and that week’s episode will tank.

Paranoid? No, centered. I may have finally figured something out. feels good. Time to head back down now…