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Monica Bielanko
That's What She Said
Just A Junk Drawer Dream
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Tuesday
Sep122006

Polka Dots And Moonbeams

In which I send my bedmate a love video:

Monday
Sep112006

The Skyline I Never Saw



"September 11, 2001

Today is a day I will remember until the day I die. I, along with the rest of the world watched as terrorists bombed The United States of America. It truly feels like armageddon.

This morning Casey and I turned on the television to see the World Trade Center on fire. Before our eyes, this landmark, this staple of the New York City, skyline came crumbling to the ground. Terrorists hijacked four commercial airplanes. Two flew straight into the twin towers of the trade center and then as people - fifty thousand people - tried to escape the rubble the buildings collapsed to the ground on top of hundreds of rescuers.

Thousands of beautiful, innocent people.. all dead. I sit here tonight watching the video from today's events. My children will watch this video forever. School children will watch this video as I was raised watching grainy black and white video of the attacks at Pearl Harbor.

New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, all these cities are closed as America watches and waits. America will never be the same. All flights and trains have been suspended. Wall Street is closed. Words are worthless. This, I believe is the beginning of World War 3. America has never seen anything like this. We have never been attacked like this. I am mad! Keep your fucking war in your own country. Leave my country alone!

People continue to be pulled from the rubble tonight. Clips of video show citizens of the Middle East celebrating our loss. In my shock I have not yet mentioned that as Casey and I rushed to get to our respective news stations word came in that a commercial airliner crashed into the Pentagon. The heart of our nation's defense under siege. I have seen no video from movies that even compares to this. The fourth airliner was also hijacked and crashed in Pennsylvania, reportedly on it's way to Camp David or the White House.

Thousands dead in the Pentagon, thousands dead at the World Trade Center. I truly can't write anymore but I will sum up my day. I went into work at nine in the morning - I work with some amazing people. Thirteen hours later I put down my headphones after producing an hour and a half long newscast without commercial breaks and cried. This day has passed in a blur. Images burned into my brain forever.

America's innocence and carefree days are gone, buried forever in the ash of the World Trade Center."

So. I realize the reasons behind the attacks on the trade center are complex.. and that America wasn't entirely innocent of wrong doing. The fact remains, those folks who died that day had nothing to do with that. What can be said about 9/11 that hasn't been said before? Today I wandered around downtown Manhattan. It's strange - the World Trade Center was a part of a skyline I have never seen. I only know New York post 9/11. But what I know so far makes me proud as hell to be a New Yorker. This city is like no other. It's the stuff of dreams, the heartbeat of the world.

The mood near the trade center today was a potpourri of circus and somber. The crazies come out to play on days like these. Aside from stumbling through a protest (click here to check it out) about some conspiracy theory or other it was a fairly somber affair. As the eyes of the country are on New York City I thought I would let you view today's events through my eyes
Sunday
Sep102006

A Night Of PHIdelity

I am just bursting with pride (and PMS related bloat but that's another blog). My best New York girls The Shalitas have been hard at work on their debut album. Last night I was finally served a delicious appetizer of what they've been cooking.

I'm so pleased to know creative, talented people who take risks and dare to bare their souls through music. Granted, I feel like the loser of the bunch - every single person is either in a band or is working on an album.. And then there's me... (Cue Violin) Well I write, I tell myself in a small voice.
"Blog? What's a blog?" brother-in-law Dave snorts. "I read books."

Regardless of the fact that I can't carry a tune in a bucket I absolutely love watching my friends get on stage in front of crowds and do their thing. The Surge's dynamic on stage has always made me laugh. He's such a ham, that one. Likes to strut around, tell stories, charm the crowd. Now, to see my cute, silly girlfriends morph into sex pots belting out rock'n'roll ditties that they've written is something to behold. I felt like a mother watching her daughter take her first steps; an enormous grin split my face in half and I was shouting and hooting at the top of my lungs.

Although I'm jealous as hell and wish I was a vampy, leather wearing, stilleto struttin' Shalita, performing is something that's just not in my DNA. Despite what this blog may lead you to believe, I don't like attention. Well, I do like attention, just in small doses.. you know, the one-on-one kind of attention as opposed to screaming crowds and such. I'll opt for syntax over songs any day of the week. Jesus, I spend half my time in dark corners hoping nobody's looking at me - can you imagine me on a stage shaking my moneymaker? It's why I never became a news anchor. Point a camera at me and I immediately develop a little something I like to call RBD or Rapid Blinking Disorder. Looks a bit like my eyelids are having tiny seizures. Suffice it to say it would be rather unpleasant hearing the evening news from a twitchy blonde with a subtle lisp. Wait! I was describing myself but I'll be damned if that description doesn't fit Babs Walters to a tee. Maybe I should've been a news anchor. But I digress...

My best girls rocked the house last night! As I have more photos and videos of Marah then I know what to do with, I spent most of my time photographing The Shalitas. The audio on my camera is for shit, so rather than ruin their soul scratching tunes (think Ronettes or The Supremes with a good measure of funky beats and guitar riffs) with bad audio I'm just gonna upload a snippet of the girls getting ready to take the stage



Click here to view pics
Saturday
Sep092006

Special Is As Special Does

From the time we're very young, most of us are told we're special. By a parent, Mister Rogers, religious instruction, teachers... We then twist that into what our personal version of special means. Of course our young, impressionable minds glean what special means from pop culture and we spend most of our formative years admiring silly, famous people.

It's a tragic day when you begin to comprehend you aren't destined for America's version of greatness, that you're just a regular Joe, one of the tired, old idiots you pitied when you were younger and overflowing with idealism. Unfortunately some of us never realize. We labor under the delusion that we are special. Banging our head against the brick wall of life because, goddammit, don't they know how special I am? I'm supposed to be famous or amazing or something. My Mom says so. For fuck sake, Mister Rogers said so and he wouldn't lie!

Britney Spears is famous. Everyone always knew she would be, right? Because she was special. Old friends and neighbors talk about how talented Britney was at age three. How she was always performing, singing, dancing, that they knew she was destined for greatness. Please. I know a dozen three year olds that behave the same way. It's only in retrospect that you can make bold statements like that. Doesn't make Britney special. Doesn't mean she worked any harder to get where she is than Mr. Rogerson, my beloved fourth grade teacher. Just means Britney gets media attention and Mr. Rogerson quietly labors in anonymity and all the young kids think Britney is special and Mr. Rogerson is boring.

I am coming to terms with my non-specialness. Or maybe I'm redefining what I thought special meant. It's tough reconciling that secret feeling in your heart that you were destined for something big. Important. I was certain I'd be a famous news anchor. Then I was certain I was going to be a world renowned reporter. Of course now I want to be a writer, whatever that means. But really, what does it all mean?

Although we are loathe to admit it, seems like we all want to be famous somehow. Reality television and even blogs are sorry evidence of that. I guess we all want to make our mark and I fell into the trap with everyone else. But I am realizing now that I'm not special simply because my mom or Sunday School teacher told me so or because I'd like to believe I'm special. We all want to believe we're special. We raise our children to believe there is something unique about them because that's the hallmark of self-esteem. But let's be honest - it's just another childhood myth like Santa Claus. Another well intentioned lie that we'll uncover as real life beats it into our heads.

There is no Santa Claus and I'm not special. There are millions of me out there. That doesn't mean I need to give up on my dreams. I need to learn to adjust my dreams with reality as I age. Recalibrate how it is I choose to measure success. What will make me special won't be whether I make money, score a book deal, write a book or what-the-fuck-ever. What will make me special lives in how honest I am in my dealings with myself and others, how I treat my husband, family and friends. So maybe it only makes me special to them and not the world at large. That's the trick... learning to be okay with that.
Thursday
Sep072006

Shame Spiral

I am feeling lower than low. It's not related to the depression. It's because I am a hypocrite. I am a self-obsessed fool. I hate myself. What am I doing? Taking photos of myself, uploading them onto the internet, sharing all my bullshit all the time like I'm somebody? What the fuck? MySpace? I'm nearly 30 years old. Yes, it's a nice way to keep in touch with people.. but suddenly, there I am again, uploading silly photos of myself where I think I look hot, checking up on other people's accounts and then making fun of The Ex or whomever for doing the same damn thing. And then this blog.. I find myself not writing what I want to write. What do I want to write? I don't know. I am trying so hard to be authentic in this blog, but inevitibly - I'm writing for an audience... and that makes it less real. Remember that stupid reality show Newlyweds with Nick and Jessica? Y'think they acted like themselves with the camera on them? Hell no. So in a way, although I'm trying to be real I end up performing to an extent. What I realized is this; since I've been writing in this blog I stopped keeping a journal. Because this blog was my journal. But I don't write everything I'd write in a journal in this blog for fear of offending or hurting someone's feelings. I didn't realize it but I've been bottling up many of my feelings and not letting them out anywhere. So.. what now? I suppose I could turn off comments. It would create a more solitary vibe so that I feel like I'm only writing for me and if anyone happens to read the shit, great. If not, s'fine too because either way I won't know who's reading and what they think.. But I like reading comments. Sometimes it's nice to know I'm not alone in my fucked up life endeavors. Also, why am I giving it so much thought? Who the fuck cares, it's just a silly little blog. There are millions of 'em out there. Today: I hate myself, I hate The Surge, I hate how I think, I hate how I feel. I want to be somebody else.