Friday, April 13, 2007

bloodwork, elephants, motörhead & me

........................


why am i dressed this way?

9:34 am, i am on the train from boston to nyc
i will spend 3.5 hours in the train, 5.25 hours in the city, then 3.5 hours on the train again.
in those 5.25 hours in new york, i will have four meetings:
manager, film agent, potential new business partner, new publishing administrator.

i decided
it would be wise to dress like a grown-up today.

i Love doing this.
Dress-Stockings-Heels-Gloves-Scarf-Hat shit. in the train station I noticed how NICE everybody was to me.
everybody held the door, everybody smiled.
because I look like a Pretty Lady.

suckers.

while on the train i will write this blog, read over my contracts, talk on the phone and eat a muffin.
i am moving fast again. but it feels fine, mostly fine.
i feel infused with life, yesterday we spent all day working on new songs, eating thai food, looking for elephants and sharing life.
when i got my adult ensemble completed this morning i checked for unnoticed stained, turned to evelyn and asked: "would you take me seriously?"
he looked up from his laptop, pondered and decided yes. we drank our tea, then he dropped me at the train station.
things have been feeling borderline domestic. but the soundtrack to this bliss is a twisted child-porn-circus-soundtrack, so it all seems justifiable.
we have a unfiltered harmony, two minds that run on relatively parallel tracks with interesting enough veers that shit don't get boring. we both need to laugh.


.


and now the weather.

the first breaking news is this:
i'm recording the most beautiful record in the world with ben folds.
we've done very little so far, just broken ground and consumed endless pumpkin loafs and coffees in nashville, but i can finally hear my godamn heart sing. its been stuck, stuck, stuck for a while.
ive been writing new music and it's the best i've ever written, and exhuming the best of the old stuff for posterity.
it's a new experience for me to be in the studio with no pressure and no drama. just make music and make it good. ben plays with me, i listen, he listens, we free-associate in the same sorts of directions.
we've been whittling down a list of over thirty songs & there will be lots of pianos, lots of sounds. ben playing drums and synths and organs. and handclaps. he's good at handclaps. he's a great producer. he loves music. he is a fantastic fucking human being and i feel like the luckiest girl in the world that he found me and wanted to work with me. what the fuck? just take it, amanda.

but i'll back up and tell you the journey of the last six weeks or so.
i feel more alive and vital than i have in years, like i'm breaking out of a hard shell.
working constantly on the music business for the last six years has really sucked my soul out. i'm only seeing it in retrospect. i knew it was happening when it was happening, but i still pressed forward. i sort of had to. and i assumed i would arrive here. and now im here. and i'm sort of stunned.

like: oh. it worked. holy shit.

but

my little swollen finger, my aching joint. a few weeks before leaving on my long journey i finally went to my Real Doctor in desperation and asked what i should do.
none of the acupuncture, massage therapy and eye-of-newt treatments had been working. she examined. arthritis, probably, she said.
she took some standard blood tests.

i went to visit lisa, my step-sister, and the wee bairn growing in her tummy. i went with her to the sonogram and we found out it was a boy.
lisa and todd live in the way out there on a ranch near santa fe. we talked about all sorts of Boy Names. she has five horses. we went riding through the deserty terrain and i fell off.
i loved riding. loved falling off. pony heaven.



i had a dream last night that i was 5 months pregnant and the vividness with which i could feel the baby in my stomach was staggering.
i kept feeling the head right through my skin, a big solid lump.
i decided on an abortion because i had no idea who the father was and that really bothered me.

zach condon, the mastermind of the wonderful band Beirut (www.myspace.com/beruit, yes the mis-spelling is intentional) and his charming girlfriend hosted me for mardi gras in albuquerque.
we listened to his new song, talked about the pitfalls of touring life and then went to play pool with a bunch of his band and friends.
zach and i made a formidable team and kicked some ass. my mother always said that she would teach her two daughters how to do four things: Cook, Sew, Play Pool and Drive Stickshift.

i flew from santa fe to dallas fort worth to wait for my plane to honolulu. this is where i would be shutting my brain down, shutting my phone and computer off and learning how to teach yoga.
i was sitting at the gate, waiting for the plane to board, looking at my phone and wondering if i should symbolically shut it off as i boarded the plane, as i sat in my seat...or wait until the plane was lifting off the ground.
they all had a nice sense of closure. i had made all of my arrangements, set my email to autoreply (talk to you in a month, namaste motherfuckers) and felt fully ready to let go and take care of myself.

then the phone rang.

it was the Real Doctor calling from boston.
something came back wrong from my bloody blood tests.
what does that mean?
you have a high ANA count, sky high.
what does THAT mean?
well, i can email you some information about it, but it doesn't mean anything specifically. it means that you very well may have some kind of auto-immune disorder.
that could mean HIV, but given your condition and the chronic complaints about your joints, it's possibly rheumatoid arthritis, and with these numbers, possibly lupus.
oh goody. tell me more.
we won't know anything until we run a shitload more tests (please note, i;m paraphrasing all of this. the Real Doctor did not say shitload).
should i come home? should i cancel my yoga retreat and fly straight back to boston, get it over with, just insert myself headfirst into the iron lung?
no. just enjoy your vacation and we'll run the tests the minute you get back.
can you tell me anything else? i'm scared and alone.
i'm sorry, amanda.

then i hung up and the flight started boarding.

i shut my phone off.

i found my seat.

i had pictured this moment in advance, lifting off into the happy abyss, leaving my cares behind for a while while i went to commune with nature, my yoga mat and my like-minded hippie freak friends.
there was no irony or bad luck. the fact that i got this phone call five minutes before taking off was perfect. i burst into tears as the plane took off, looking at dallas getting little underneath me, thinking about what my life would be like if i had lupus or terrible arthritis and wondering if i was going to be plagued by this wondering for the next month. i sat and watched my thoughts and thought about all the people i knew who had battled cancer, falls from high-wires and dozens of broken bones, crippling afflictions and comas...by the time we landed in honolulu, i was feeling ready for death and weirdly content.

i kept remembering this story one of my teachers had told in class some time before, and i clung to it:

Although Henri Matisse was nearly 28 years younger than Auguste Renoir, the two artists were dear friends and frequent companions. When Renoir was confined to his home during the last decade of his life, Matisse visited him daily. Renoir, almost paralyzed by arthritis, continued to paint in spite of his infirmities. One day as Matisse watched the elder painter working in his studio, fighting torturous pain with each brush stroke, he blurted out: "Auguste, why do you continue to paint when you are in such agony?"
Renoir answered simply:
"The beauty remains; the pain passes."
And so, almost to his dying day, Renoir put paint to canvas. One of his most famous paintings, The Bathers, was completed just two years before his passing, 14 years after he was stricken by this disabling disease.

i thought a lot about this.

i was astounded. for the next month the wondering didn't plague me as much as i assumed it would. i knew i had no control, no impact on the outcome. well...thats not quite right. i assumed that if i let it go and did my best not to worry that this was my best and only defense against the worst possible news.

some guy i used to be good friends with cut off contact with no explanation a few weeks before i left for the trip and that, strangely, plagued me more than the blood test. i wasn't sure what it all meant, i just held it as a fact of life the way i held this shaky information about my health. in both cases, it was just there. nothing i could do about it except sit, watch, breathe. no asking questions (there would be no response anyway, in either case) no how-can-i-fix-this, which is my usual impulse. no what-the-fuck-did-i-do-to-deserve-this, no WHY-WHY-WHY?WHHHHHHHYYYY?!?!!!??
just: oh well. shit happens. blood tests come back bad. people disappear from your life without telling you why. what can you do about it? nada. health is random; people are unkind. c'est la vie. move on.

at kalani, which was the retreat center on the Big Island that hosted my yoga posse, i found real peace. i got there a few days early and made friends with the staff. i stayed in a wooden dorm-room with a bunch of other folks; i ate beautiful but simple foods, floated around in the water, read books, walked around, drank tea, tried to calm my jumpy mind and fell for a brit from outside cambridge whose favorite band is motörhead.

a few days later, the bootcamp started; barely a free moment in the day. wake up, silent walk, morning meditation, morning yoga, lunch, afternoon teacher training and evaluation, light dinner, evening practice and then night-time grok sessions: basicially led experiments in becoming as honest as possible with yourself and those around you. one night we all stood face-to-face for long stretches of time, not smiling, not talking, just being. one night we paired off and sat down with someone we didn't know well, hit the lights and poured out (in total confidence) our deepest fears, insecurities and regrets. think what you will; it worked. by the end of the week we were a family.

we learned from each other, we were totally honest with each other, we dug deep and respected one another. there were a few moments that grated on my nerves and struck me as crossing the cheese line, but mostly i was in my element. i was so impressed with all of us. though people poured their souls out, their stories and sicknesses and fears and deaths and general human dramas, the whole process was armored against the self-indulgent and self-pitying and geared towards the fuck-it-be-here-now. my body fell into itself, my hips stopped cracking, my left little toe finally detached from it's co-dependent neighbor. all sorts of shit started going down. i became a better yoga teacher.

i kept my bloody test at bay. i tried not to think about lupus too much.
i cant describe the beauty of kalani, or of hawaii, it's just impossible. there was an easiness about every act that dug into me like a stinging reminder of how hard i've made everything. the air was good, the people were good, the food was good, the place just held you...i felt my bad skin dropping off.

i felt like i was leading a double life, communing with my huge yoga family and then stealing moments with my motörhead crush and his friends on the kalani staff. it felt perfectly balanced to do yoga for 4 hours and then sit in a ganja-filled haze of a cabin and listen to everyone rapping local gossip and planning beer runs. my neck was stiff; i was recommended to a chiropractor down the street. i gave him a call on the staff phone. he picked me up the next day after breakfast, in his jaguar, a half-burned marlboro lite hanging out of his mouth.

you amanda?
fuck yeah.
lets go.

he cracked me 13 times and blasted Foreigner from his boom-box.
i became an addict. the next day he picked me up on his suzuki motorcycle. we hit 85 on the one-mile stretch to his house.

i stayed a few extra days in hawaii after the bootcamp ended. some friends and i went for a guided hike across the lava fields that la at the bottom of the active volcano. it rained and rained and we hiked like madpeople over miles of black glassy rock along the ocean. it was primordial. we finally reached a spot where a piece of the ground had collapsed into the flow and we stood around the edge of the hole into the earth. the magma was flowing right beneath us and you couldn't look too long or too hard; if you did your face would burn off. everybody threw something into the magma, which looked like white-golden crackly liquid and obliterated anything it touched on contact. then we hiked back and art-ed out on the way, taking naked photos lying in the lava fields. we came home frozen and soaked to the bone. richard, the wonderful man who started and runs kalani, let me wander into his cabin whenever i wanted to play his electric keyboard. he would arrive at breakfast every morning with flowers for whoever he ran into first. mahalo, richard. you made heaven.

on sunday mornings the enitre community from that corner of the big island, called puna, gathers for Church at kalani.
Church there means everyone gathers in a covered tent for three hours of strict no-talking: just ecsatically dancing and gyrating to a trance/80s/techno DJ with some wack-ass folk music thrown in for good measure.
hundreds of people wigging out in broad smiling daylight....little kids, dogs, old folks, clothing optional, dancing optional. some people just sat around and watched and smiled. freak-on freak-out time. my god.

then david and i went to the black sand beach, where the party continued into the afternoon, then rented a mustard mustang convertible and drove to kona on the other side of the island with the top down.
we stole a mix CD from the kalani kitchen and had no idea what was on it. i heard a song called "i will follow you into the dark" and wondered who it was by. i played it over and over again. we alternated between that and the chemical brothers. no motörhead. i mean, nothing against motörhead. we climbed the car over the volcano on the way back the next day and the temperature dropped forty degrees. we ate lots of fruit. we danced in the car david drove me the the spot of jungle where he lived for a while with a group of renegade anarcho-hippies called Someland (everybody wants Some Land) and the annex they built a few years later in the space adjacent to Someland (Space City). people live off the land here, in shelters they build themselves, generators, scratch. we got the mustang up to 110 on the way back to kalani.

i flew back from hawaii sunburned and completed. cooked to perfection.

and then....things weren't so good.

for starters, i noticed, for the first time in my life, that i was not even looking forward to coming home. my haven.
i went into the rheumotologist and got the tests run. i had to wait two weeks for the results.
i tried to let things go, hour by hour, minute by minute.
i kept my yoga practice solid and got second, third, then fourth opinions about my hand.

i was told i might have to have hand surgery. that bummed me out.

i started having to wonder what i would do about the june tour if i couldn't play.

other things started to ache on me more and more by the day, especially since i was back in the world of mutual acquaintances and all the gossip flying around exhausted me. i found myself so uninterested in it and so sucked in at the same time, the way you feel compelled yet disgusted picking up a Star Magazine at the dentist's office. i went to the dentist's office. i got my teeth cleaned. you've been grinding, they said.
does it hurt?
i laughed.

things started to really come into focus, in a more profound way than usual. between ben and hawaii, i had been spent such good, quality around people who were open and honest in hawaii that i stayed on a roll. my deep friendships got a little deeper. especially in the face of my weird vulnerability about the tests and my swollen hand, the relationships in my life that were real, honest, caring, good all floated to the surface and the bad and uncaring ones seemed to be sinking away. i took better and harder looks at my good friends and our lives together and was touched at how hard we've tried to care for each other over the years. it's kept me, and them, afloat.
i thought about the friend i missed, when i was gone. it's odd but when i count my deep friends and relationships on my fingers....one, two..........three.......there's a new, odd sort of spot for this community of people who read and respond to my blog. its become a different kind of Friend, its hard to define. it's not a person, it's not even a defined group of people. but i know what it feels like and i feel like it knows me.
its like time magazine said, fucking, it's You.

i love You. i love This.

i love cafe coco in nashville.

i took all the advice that was given to me. i got bodywork twice a week. i bought a parrafin wax bath for The Finger. i started eating lots of fish oil. i bought a gyroscopic tendon-exerciser.
i added bromalain, alpha lypoic acid and tumeric to my already long list of supplements.

a few days went by that were very sad, then a few days went by that were very good. it was like that for a while.

i sat in the Doctors waiting room, hanging up the phone in shock and not crying until i called up a friend to relate.
funny that thing where it doesn't hit you until you say it out loud to someone else.
looking blearily at yet more piles of Star magazine. still waiting.
i wasn't used to this. such low down YO' MAMA kinda stuff.
of course it hurts.
of course it fucking hurts.

things are changing in your life, i thought, looking out the window and waiting to get the test results. just wait. just breathe. just wait. just breathe. don't let them get you down.

i read a lot of paul auster books. i'm on my 5th. somebody here recommended "eat pray love" and i'm about a third of way through that. it's fucking awesome. thank you.

why did it hurt, actually, when somebody yelled YO' MAMA at you? i remember these moments vividly, darren foswell in the hall after reccess shouting YO' MAMA at me, at my classmates, at mr. heneghan our 4th grade teacher, at whoever passing by might have a mama worth insulting.

this yo' mama-ing was so indiscriminate that it really shouldnt have hurt if it happened to get flung in your direction. but it still always did. this rational "but darren foswell doesn't KNOW my mama..." really didn't help. insult hits you, heart gets hurt. period. what matters is not yo' mama, but the fact that somebody wants to insult yo' mama without even knowing her. or knowing you, for that matter.

mr. heneghan always had a clever retort when darren would pull out the YO' MAMA shit during class. he would stare douglas (who was a general discipline problem to begin with) straight in the eye and say:
"No. Not my mama. Yo' mama. My mama's dead."

anyway.

becca and i went to the kaiser chiefs show at avalon and played soccer with them and the drag queens who were sharing the dressing room for their show at axis.
if indoor soccer with drag queens and the kaiser chiefs can't cheer you up, i don't know WHAT the fuck can.

days go by. i clean my entire apartment and throw out everything. this helps a little.
i throw out pots and pans that have mouse shit in them from 2003. i never cook anyway.

i started considering all the balances in my life. what's worth the suffering, what's not. i wondered if i'd ever play madison square garden. i wondered if my soul would have to die before i get there in some inevitable faustian rock-star ritual. i wondered if tolerating bad relationships, bad air, bad food and bad sleep is worth it, to me or to anyone.

while i was in nashville, i hung out every day at the cafe near the studio and did a morning yoga class. i had two blisters on the tops of my feet. i wasn't quite sure how they got there, maybe from flip-flops, but unless my imagination was playing tricks on my, they were growing.

that's it,
i finally said in defeat one day.
i'm dying.

i took a quick trip to new york and back to commune with the city and to see reggie. robyn hitchcock was playing one night (with the venus 3, ie R.E.M. without micahel stope, and they were AMAZING: www.myspace.com/robynhitchcock) and we went over, brought the fabulous ms. emilyn brodsky. she insisted that we go see the elephants being paraded down 34th street at midnight. apparently this is a NYC tradition, they do this every year when ringling brothers comes to madison square garden. so we booked it from robyn's show. the cab got us as close as we could get to 34th, since the streets were shut down, and emilyn texted furiously with a friend who was sending us updates more or less reading "THEY JUST CROSSED MADISON HURRY THE FUCK UP YOU GONNA MISS IT". we ran, literally at top speed with our bags slamming on our backs, gasping for air....down 34th, three blocks behind the elephants, trying to catch up. reggie gave up the chase and said he'd meet up later. we got the madison square garden thirty seconds after they'd led the elephants inside. i ran smack into a protester holding up a sign that read:

"MOMENTS OF ENTERTAINMENT
A LIFETIME OF MISERY"

got my answer.

and i'm glad i missed the elephants.


Doctor called me in, finally.
she asked me do you mind if the resident interns watch?
i'm thinking why does she have to have two resident interns watching?
this is it, it's over.
she's got them here so they can learn first-hand how to be an empathetic doctor while you break the news to a professional pianist that she has a disfiguring joint disease with no cure.

its ok by me i said.

you're clear, she said, the tests were wrong.

you're fine, she said. you're fine.























i did a little dance for the resident interns.
















..................

89 comments:

lyrical lie said...

I'm so glad that your hand is okay!!!! If it makes you feel any better, my left leg is all messed up, I'm a dancer, and when I turn out, instead of turning out from my hip, my leg also turns out from my knee, which really screwed up how my kneecap sits on my leg. The orthopedist that I went to for it not only told me that dance wasn't a sport, but he also told me that I had to quit if I didn't want to have a knee replacement by the time I'm 20 (this was the year I turned 18). Well I'm going to be 20 this year, still dancing, and my knee is fine. I did pop my kneecap out of place while dancing in a kickline, but that was just a weird occurrence. So don't believe everything that the doctors say.

The yoga retreat sounds like it was wonderful! The way you described it makes me want to be there so badly, it just sounds so amazing.

I can't wait to hear the new material, I love having my creative blocks lifted, lately I've been choreographing some amazing things that I never thought that I could come up with, because I've just been listening to music and moving, its so freeing and wonderful.

I wish I could come to the NYC show on the June tour (my mom wants to go so she can see Cyndi Lauper), but I can't, its unfortunately too much money for me because I'd be going by myself (my mom is going on a cruise with my dad the week of the show). I really hope that you someday play the St. George Theatre (www.stgeorgetheatre.com) in Staten Island, NY, so I can finally go to a concert!!! But please, check out the site and send them an email, I work there as the greatest usher/merch girl that has ever worked there, and its an amazingly beautiful place.

Amanda, I'm sorry if I rambled, I'm really sick and on a variety of cough and cold medicines, and its 2:30am, so I'm a bit fucked in the head now, lol.
-Shannon

Koby said...

Wow, sounds like you had an incredible retreat. Hawaii is beautiful isn’t it? It was agony checking the blog for over a month without an update! I guess I did not realize how much I enjoy your writing / stories.

You had me pretty frightened with the finger thing, so the doctors say it won't fall off but does it still hurt? Whatever, you could make killer music with two fingers! And I would advise you do!

That's classy the way you dressed up and took the train into NYC for all your meetings and such. Hope they went well and everything falls back into place for you.

Later,

JK

Omer said...

I wish you all the best.

Love,
Omer from Israel

Essie said...

Fuck, you're amazing. If I work out how t oexplain I will, but i think thats enough for now.

xx

manoloblanikgrl said...

Amanda,
I'm really glad you're okay. I know the feeling of dread when you're waiting on results. It's the worst kind of hell knowing that by some chance everything you've worked hard for, dreamed about and thought about for so long could vaporize. I'm ecstatic for you. I really really am. And I'm looking forward to seeing you in June in LA. Orchestra pit row AA 103/104. I'm forcing my mother to watch you play live. There's something about watching you and Brian play live that's magic. And if Madison Square Garden is your dream...March on, you'll get there eventually. Have a wonderous day. I hope only good things are instore for you and Brian both.

Rowan1186 said...

That's fantastic! I'm glad your hand remains unscathed. And it sucks that you should be forced to play dress-up in order to be taken seriously.

Also, Cafe Coco is amazing. I'm imagining sitting at one of the tables, glancing over and thinking, "Nah, can't be her."

Frin said...

I've never commented on your journal before (even though I have read every single entry) but I wished to express how much I missed your blogs. I'm truly glad you're well.

Also, if you don't mind, I'd just like to tell you of my morning (there is a point, I assure you..however you shall have to find it because I won't tell you directly):

At 1am I got drunk.

Entirely smashed. I had in hand a bottle of Vodka and staggered to a new housing development... with nobody around for kilometres I proceeded to explore the half built houses, glowing grey-blue in the moonlight. I named the rooms and laughed loudly. There was house that didn't yet have a roof so I went 'inside'. It rained. I laughed harder... and then, for a reason I don't quite understand, I noticed my bottle was empty and, after moving into the half-finished street, I sung your songs at the top of my lungs, with all the emotion I could put into my 17-year-old voice. I sung until my throat was horse, and then, ironically (I laughed about this, too) I whispered "Sing" as loudly as my throat could manage while the sun rose and I made my way home..

Thank you.

It was perfect. It was freedom. It was (to borrow a phrase from my butoh teacher Steven–yes, from Zen Zen Zo) "everything...and nothing."

Seán said...

Congratulations on your finger not being fucked up. But I could still see you finding a way to make music, disfiguration and all.
This makes me want to go into a purity-fast myself...as I type this, there is literally a small piece of easter grass, glittering bright green. Taunting me. Maybe it *isn't* very good to eat your bodyweight in pure sugar. It still doesn't help.
Try to stay sane. <3

Many-Eyed said...

I hate how fate screws you over with things. Espeically tests that you cry and scream mentally or verbally about.
But at least there was some happiness about eh?
I even the thought of seeing elephants must of been sorta fun...well elephants that weren't caged.
As everyone esle said, I'm glad your finger is still intact.

oh well I'lll stop here, goodluck with everything,
Michelle.

pspjr13 said...

"did you ever see a woman
coming out of new york city
with a frog in her hand?

I did don't you know,
and don't it show?"

Avery said...

When I read that you are recording an album with Ben Folds, I actually jumped out of my seat because I was so exited. He's my third favorite musician ever, after you then Regina Spektor.

I love how your entry was like a mini mystery, complete with a dance scene and a happy ending.

-Avery

the Kate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hunger For The Great Light said...

I was overjoyed when I read about your happy-dance. Have you every considered writing suspense novels? Because I think you may have a talent for it.

I was also overjoyed to see that you had posted. I'm very happy that you were able to un-plug and take some time off. We should all do it some time. Hell, I wish I could. If my current lifestyle allowed it. Eh, maybe someday.

But I digress.

Back to the joy of seeing that you posted. I dropped my morning entirely. I weant and made some coffee and breakfast, put my other plans on hold and read. I've found myself in a wierd sort of headspace since you stopped posting. Not that I'm some sort of strange addict or anything, but I discovered a couple days ago that your blog has an important place in my life.

You see, I'm a bit of a musician myself (struggling, starving artist trying to make it in the vicious world of music, you know the story) and I've discovered that your blog inspires me to write. The whole time you weren't posting everything I wrote was shit. My band couldn't figure out what was wrong with me. I tried to find alternate sources of inspiration, rented "Dig" and "Yellow Submarine", read books about my favorite bands, sat down with the Dolls' song book and tried to teach myself something, but it all seemed to fall short.

I know this can't be a super long term thing, because you won't blog forever. All good things must come to an end. But for now, you are my Muse. And there are no words on this Earth that I can use to express my thanks to you for it. But Thank You. Stay beautiful.

Love,
Eric

the Kate said...

Awesome! However, if you ever come across it again, the best pharmaceutical treatment for rheumatoid arthritis is a combination of methotrexate and a biologic agent that blocks the action of tumor necrosis factor (adalimumab or etanercept --- these are the generic names) And it is very important that aggressive treatment be started as soon as possible. Just FYI.

Anyhow, here's a song parodying you.. My friend Adam Stoncheck sings and plays piano, and I do all the laughs. Don't be offended, because we both love you very much.

Enjoy!

michelle said...

holy shit, amanda. you had me teary-eyed and worried sick.

and now i have to tell you a story.

a couple of years ago, i passed out at work. it was sudden. i didn't feel it coming. then, a couple of days later, i passed out again. i went to a doctor. he said that i was anemic. he gave me iron pills. i started taking the iron pills and lost - i kid you not - 25 pounds in three weeks. and seeing as how i've always been tiny and only weigh 100 pounds regularly, i looked like a walking corpse.

i went to the emergency room and they told me that, if i hadn't gone there that night, i would have died. i was diagnosed with crohn's disease by a gastro-enterologist the next morning. i had never heard of crohn's, which scared me. i was nineteen.

it's an auto-immune disorder as well. my immune system basically attacks itself. i have chronic inflammation, meaning that i get frequent abdominal pain/nausea. and at the moment, in order to stave off symptoms, i am practically forced to take prescription drugs i would much rather live without (but because of my intense fear of losing weight again, i take them). the disease also causes the anemia, so i often get dizzy/tired at various points in the day.

it's extremely difficult to hold a job and sometimes even to attend classes, but i'm starting to realize my physical limitations. i realized that i feel better when i'm doing things i want to be doing, so i decided to aim high. i'm still doing well in school and want to be a screenwriter. my professors tell me it's possible. i also try to make it possible for the people in my life to talk to me about my illness, to ask me questions without worrying about whether or not it's "right" to do so. i don't want people to feel as if they're treading thin ice while talking to me. i believe in honesty, no matter how hurtful or difficult it can be. it's always better.

i know i'm on a tangent here.

i guess my point is that it helps to talk about it -- no matter what "it" is. you don't have to be brave all the time. if you're scared, it's perfectly fine to say so. and i'm moved by the fact that you took the time to be open with everyone about your fears, even though you eventually found you did not have a chronic illness. you were able to remain positive and rational at a time when it is very hard to do so.

anyway, amanda, i'm relieved to hear that you're okay. you're a beautiful woman, and i can't wait to hear the album.
(based on the few songs i heard at the lily pad show, i must agree that your songwriter is getting better and better).


lots of love,
michelle

michelle said...

about the last line of my previous post: i meant songwritING, not songwritER.
one little typing error made it sound as though you've hired someone to write songs for you.


michelle

Jessica said...

You said bairn and I squeed.

cursed out said...

fuck i missed you

June Miller said...

There was a point, last month, where I was ready and possibly willing to die. I'm not trying to sound melodramatic or anything like that, but I never understood the phrase 'dead weight' until that night, when lifting myself up was one of the most taxing things I'd ever tried doing. But when I was just resting there for that little while, I was perfectly content with not living. That's kind of a scary thought, when you think about it.

But something, I knew, was there to keep me alive. Not a presence, or a spirit, or anything deeply profound like that...just something. Maybe a thought, a belief. Either way, I'm alive enough to be typing this now, right?

People must be damned idiots to not notice a pretty lady without the Dress-Stockings-Heels-Gloves-Scarf-Hat shit.

The solo record sounds like it's gonna be the shit. I greatly enjoy handclaps.

Thank god for that Hawaii trip. It sounded heavenly. The place looks lovely. I don't know how I could fair the humidity, though.

I'm quite glad to hear your finger's dandy, as well. Thank you for the suspenseful build-up. :)

Pony heaven sounds like my dreamscape when I was six. Just thought it should be mentioned.

This is the biggest fucking comment I've left here in a while, I think. I need to shut the fuck up. And goddamn, I love Friday the 13th.

"The beauty remains; the pain passes."

Maybe that was that belief, hm?


...


Thank you.

steph g said...

Three cheers for moving forward, looking inward, not needing surgery, conquering our inner freak outs, creating,and Cafe Coco. It's one of those too-rare places here in Nashville that attracts a strange and beautiful variety of different kinds of people.

Cory said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cory said...

so glad you are back and well and inspired
also, "child-porn-circus-soundtrack"?

Damien said...

You make my heart happy and you make everyonee who knows anything a bout you want to be a better person.

You should know that.

And you should know that we love you, too.

Damien said...

Also, I once snorted raw sugar at Cafe Coco, and washed it down with ginger beer, on a bet, before going to a rave, because I was a stupid child, and did many things that gave me funny stories.

One day, I'll tell them all.

Carol said...

:) im glad your okay! Im happy for how happy you must have been while ..happy dancing.


You write so well, you have so many things to write about.
reading this entry makes me feel that im okay too.
Ive felt depressed on and off for as far as i can remember (which could be months or years, I forget)
i have not felt happy..and i keep wondering what im doing wrong..and how to fix it, Doubting if im capable of fixing it at all..and wondering how ill end up.
but its okay, if i can feel happy, and blissful now, at this very moment, then everything is okay.
and i will be fine.

and later i will blog about it, and laugh.


I hope.

-Carol

Also said...

It took three sittings (my life has gotten busy and so random while you were gone) but I just wanted you to know I read every word caught up in the story and suspense. And I am glad you got to dance at the end.

Welcome back to the wonderful weird world of blogs. It is a richer place with you blogging in it.

missimpossible said...

I've never posted you a comment before.

But I always read.

And: can I just tell you how glad I am you got clear test results?

My mum's got lupus. Totally destroyed her hands. She can hardly write sometimes, never mind play the piano (she used to).

Sometimes I think about it and it makes me feel a little sick.

Anyhow.

New material brings me great excitement and squee-happy feelings!

As does your use of the word "bairn"!!! Tickled me pink indeed.

Your music is wonderful and beautiful.

Keep smiling for the little things :)

S x

holly said...

who needs fingers when youve got talent amanda?

Gina said...

You're okay, you're okay, you're OKAY!! Thank the Universe!! Man, my jaw was dropping further and further with each paragraph, thinking, NOOOOO!!! SO happy you're fine...

What an incredible experience for you in Hawaii--I'm so glad that you got close to so many fantastic souls. I'm glad it's inspiring and energizing you back in your regular life--yeah!!

Keep having many, many soul-blossoming experiences, Amanda!

Much love & hugs to you~

FireAngel said...

OMG girl you freaked me out... but you did it beautifully. LOL! Sounds like you had an amazing time. There's a place I go to... once a year. It's my element. It's always a let down to come back. Like it's my turn in the barrell or something. When we find those places that fit our souls so well, it's hard to leave.

I'm glad to see you posting again. I'm more glad that the tests were wrong. Nothing like a little scare to bring out the clarity eh?

jordan said...

I realized I finished reading this post at exactly 10:07, three hours from whence you posted. I thought that was kind of nice and poetic.

I'm glad you don't have lupus, that might have ruined my day, week, year, you know. I'm sure it would have ruined quite a bit more for you. I think it was a very cruel, twisted, fate joke to have you so concerned (I know there's a better word than this, but it isn't coming) throughout your unplugging, when there wasn't a reason to be concerned at all. Though perhaps it was best you overcame it anyway, c'est la vie after all. Doctors play unwitting yet cruel jokes and make you squirm in your airplane seat.

I also think it is a twisted fate joke that you were in my fair state of New Mexico (better than just regular Mexico!). I don't believe you and Brian have ever played a show here. I hoped you liked the sky, that's the only thing that keeps me going around here. Come play sometime, perhaps outside? Wouldn't that be neat... It's not quite as fabulous as Madison Square, but the summers are fantastic.

Yours through headphones,
jordan marie.

Maire?? said...

Oh Amanda I am happy for you. when i saw that you had a new post I was very happy. I always love reading what you have to say. it is so great that this is possible at all. and i love the way you say things too. your so wonderful. thank you. I am also very happy to say that i am going to see the true colors tour!!!!!!!my mums two gay friends are paying for it(i don't have that kind of money)and when i was reading about your hand and all it reminds of my mom. she just broke her toe, and now her knee is all screwed up. but the broken toe is on a different leg than her screwed up knee, so she can't walk right, and she can't do anything about it because she can't go to the doctor because she has no money because she has no job, she has no job because she quit her old one because her old job at a old people home was a bitch, her old job was a bitch because well maybe the people there had sticks shoved up their butts, and they maybe have sticks shoved butts because...hmmmmmmmmmmm i will never know. but that is beside the point. is there a point at all?

well I love Ben Folds.hehe the other day on my bus ride home from school my friend and i put on "Rockin' the Suburbs" everyone on the bus was like "what the hell is this" and i just laugh at them for their lack of good music taste.
oh and that reminds me this morning i put on regina spektor and once again people were making fun of it an example; when "chemo limo" was playing they were making fun of the way she says "style", but what they did was very juvenile, they just said style in a very stupid childish voice.eh stupid bus kids.okay this is my last bus story, but also i played arcade fire's new albumn "neon Bible"on the bus this afternoon, it is so good. in the time you were gone from the blogging world i have become a better person, a changed person.it's all thanks to regina spektor. one of her lines in "on the radio" inspired me to be a better, nicer person. i forget how exactly the line goes, but thats not really the point. once again is there really a point?and it is alos thanks to regina spektor that my obsession with you(it must be odd to know that someone is obsessed with a person who is really just a normal person, and an awsome person at that)is not as crazy and stupid as it was.see i just got into regina spektor about a month ago, and i love her. so now i'm not always like...well i don't know what i'm trying to say,but my obsession with you is not as bad and unhealthy as it was. now i am not really even obsessed, but i still love very much.you fucking rock.well Amanda i hope all goes well for you. have a good life.
****lots of love****

p.s. if you ever happen to go to 1369 and see a girl with red curly hair and nose ring/this odd piercing on her neck/a tatoo behind her ear/light blue eyes named kelly that is my sisters stupid lazy roomate. she is a jerk, not really but she makes really stupid choices like piercing her neck.

Don said...

you is me.

and, i am the you's i could be.

...

but, because i failed so miserably at commenting correctly, i've failed to be the me i'd hoped to fake for the sake of effigy.

tuaregblue said...

I was holding my breath at the end..but you danced and it came out as relieved laughter.

I'm so glad to hear that Hawaii was so good for you, you really deserved the gift of time away.

Amanda+Ben Folds? Woohoo! (Well, at least that's approximately the noise I made while reading that;).

And yay you like Robyn Hitchcock..bet that was a great show.

Be wonderful, pretty lady:)

Sebastian said...

moments of fear are the worst, the worst
they kill your soul, they eat your thoughts they numb and paralize, whatever shitrain you might be heading into the fear of it makes it all ten times worse
the trick is probably to keep breathing and live as if these were the early days of a better world (even though this world is already pretty damn good once you take a look at it)
good old world.
Who sang that? To Waits did. And he should know...eh?
be good

Ange said...

Yay. My heart dropped as I read the stuff about the Lupus, etc...it sucks not to be sure of what your body is doing to you, it's like you have no control over yourself and it's sort of frightening. Can't wait for the new music.. (I still listen to DD every day as a stress release) your music is wonderful, and I hope you make a lot more of it for years to come. :]

nicknackpattywack said...

As outwardly cliche as it may seem,
yes, something under the surface says,
"C'est la vie."
It is a circle, there is a plan...
dead skin will atrophy itself to start again.
Look closely at the open wound...
see past what covers the surface
Underneath chaotic catastrophe,
creation takes stage.

Natalie Rose said...

i had a dream last night that i was 5 months pregnant and the vividness with which i could feel the baby in my stomach was staggering.
i kept feeling the head right through my skin, a big solid lump.
i decided on an abortion because i had no idea who the father was and that really bothered me.


I've had so many of those dreams, and I still can't get over how tangible they are. My mother has so many books on dreams, I figured it was just more productive to tell her what I dreamed rather than attempting to look various objects and sensations up in an assortment of books.

The pregnancy dreams, she always told me, meant a new beginning in my life.

So what having an abortion in a dream may mean, admittedly, disconcerts me.

I feel like I should say something else, that it's all brimming just beneath the surface, but for now I'll just tell you that I missed you.

David said...

What an amazing post-nice job maintaining the suspense. So glad to hear that your fingers are A-OK! Been waiting for you to come back to the popsicle stand. It's so interesting to get this whole other view of you through your writing after absorbing your music. Thanks so much for your honesty- what an admirable trait, and it serves you so well.

Yoga retreat good. Hawaii is beautiful - I was in Maui squatting on a beach with some nasty local low-lives at about the time you were being born Amanda. Bicycled all over Maui but saw no magma.

I wonder about those elephants in NYC too ... think they're the ones that are in the room? Poor things! We are animals too, sick sick animals. It's all good isn't it? I mean, except for the bad shit, right? Sorry. Just giddy with delight to read your DD blog again. Thanks!

Marika said...

The blog is back in town!

*breaks into impromptu song*

Alright, that was a bit random...anyway, one thing you should take if you have suspicion of arthritis in that finger is glucosamine and chondroitin supplements.

Thank goodness you do not have lupus, it is the disease that scares me the most. My dad had lupus, never finished college because it struck him in his last semester. Thankfully for me, he lived (apparently there was a treatment that was sort of "kill or cure") but he lived and my parents got married after that, and he's never had a flareup since. But it still scares the living crap out of me and I am so, so thankful you don't have it because it's a terrible illness.

I'm glad you got the time off too...it's so refreshing to not have to do anything, isn't it?

I'm very excited about you working with Ben Folds, that will be great! And I am going to stop rambling now and go to bed. Goodnight all.

andrea said...

Well, my dear, it's been awhile. Your absence made me realize, even more so that I already did, how much I appreciate your blogging. How I miss coming here and sharing part of me with you, knowing that you're going to share part of yourself back. It's definitely something to cherish.

Hawaii. I never would have guessed. It does seem like an idyllic location for a yoga retreat now that I think about it. Myself? I've never been. The grok sessions sound like something I'd enjoy and really take to heart.

Lupus. ugh. My aunt had it. I'm very thankful that you don't and that you're hand will be ok.

The more you write about your album the more excited I become. I keep thinking to myself that I hope it is out by the end of the year. My list of favorite new albums last year wasn't very long. Lots of good music needs to be made this year so that can change. What you're doing sounds Real and Exciting. I don't even know if this will be on the album but I want to hear Guitar Hero. The way people talk about it makes it sound amazing. And I saw that quick clip of it that someone posted on the forum awhile back. Just hearing the beginning took my breath away. Rock on, do your thing, I'll be proud.

Pregnant dreams. I haven't had one in a long time but I remember how vivid they are. I remember hugging someone and knowing what it felt like for them to be up against my huge belly. Those dreams seem all to real.

I finished two paintings while you were away. This is not to say that I am a "painter", in the Matisse or Renoir type of way. I am simply an artist who dabbles in many things and one of them is painting. Anyways, this excites me because I rarely finish anything. I had the morning off today. I went to the 2 big art museums in town, the Kemper (Check out Jennifer Steinkamp, http://jsteinkamp.com/ ,she's amazing.) and the Nelson. They are located exactly 0.28 miles from one another, separated by The Kansas City Art Institute. I walked through the campus to get from one museum to the other. I never had before. It's beautiful. Paintings sitting outside to dry, a big white tree swing in the middle of the yard, lovely buildings with vines growing over, bikes everywhere. I felt at home. I felt like I should be there. I felt like there were people there that I could connect with. In that instant I questioned everything I was doing with my education (i wish i could just say fuck it). I love art history. I love making art and knowing about where it's been and how it's influenced cultures and changed/changed with the world. I had my college create it as a minor for me. They don't offer it as a major. Guess who does. Guess who's too lazy to transfer. Guess who needs to stop making excuses and get off her ass and do what she needs to do now so she'll be satisfied with life later. I'm going to spend part of my day off tomorrow looking into it.

I went to the Crave Cafe. I had coffee, some cherry baklava/crumble cake thingy, and read. I sat there pondering my ideas. I have 3 ideas for paintings. 2 of them are Dresden Dolls related. One directly, one Amanda Palmer solo. Both excite me. I was low on paint so I went to the store for more. Of course I ended up with more than I intended and spent $60 on paint, brushes, and a canvas. I'm ready to get that shit rolling.

Try to keep feeling alive and take care of yourself. And continue to make beautiful things and send them out into the world...and have a lot of fucking fun while you're at it too!

til next time

all my love,

andrea

Bug said...

Oh, I'm so happy for you, Amanda!
I actually cried when I finished reading your blog.
Both of my parents and my brother are musicians, and live in terror of hurting their hands.
And I am so glad to hear from you; I can't even tell you what a lifeline your blog is to all us freaks.
More importantly, I'm glad that your break from technology has revived you so much; it's your music that drew most of us to you in the first place, after all.
I still remember the first time I heard "A is for Accident," playing at 10 PM at Petsmart, and a month later, "Coin Operated Boy" on my local pirate radio station, and then meeting you and seeing you live at SXSW, and discovering your blog. I feel like my DD experience has been perfect; artistically pure. And now, you're playing in Houston on my birthday, three hours away.
Perfect.
Spring should be a time of revitalization. I can recall how exhausted you were last year; tired, fighting burn-out, facing a long tour season, and sick of dealing with business people. I'm just so glad for you that everything you did worked.
Good luck!
-Stella

Innuendo said...

although it's a wonderful relief that you are going to be ok, i think it's a marvelous testament to your courage and strength of character that you were fully prepared to meet any health-challenges with hope and perseverence.

life episodes such as this have always forced me to count my blessings and adjust my attitude, as agonizing as the experience can be.

i know the awful gloomy feeling of waiting & not knowing what the tests will say, your mind running the story out to the end. everytime i am in that position, i just want a black or white answer: "just give it to me straight, doc". because good or bad, it's easier to move forward and take it for what it is. there is nothing worse than...maybe it's this, or it could be THAT.

congratulations. with the retreat and the good news, i'll bet you are fired up for great things.

L said...

Hari Aum and Woo! Congrats and life is beautiful.

I happened to watch rage on the ABC late last night. They replayed you & Brian guest producing, introducing Baby Got Back. That clip never fails to crack me up: "You can have them bimbos, I'll keep my women like Flo Jo"... Auditory necrophilia. Aaw yeah... They also showed an old clip of Henry Rollins sledging Morrissey by playing one his tracks as a warning to young viewers "cheer up or you'll end up like him"... pure comedy...

Oh, and methotrexate is fucking horrible...

Hari Aum Tat Sat, yo mama, und ting...

L

Kevin Doran said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin Doran said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the_skyisfalling said...

hey Amanda.
fist off, let me say that Hawaii is great - nobody looks forward to going home after any length of time spent there.
Second off, I have lupus-related rheumatiod arthritis in my index and middle fingers. They give me medicine for it. I play enough piano that it's worthless. Funny thing is that piano is what makes me feel better.
I can't wait for the new material. It will be godly. I know it.

Any suggestions for sightseeing in London or Innsbrook (austiria?) I'm going in two weeks. My version of a retreat.


Love and kisses,
Mel :)

AllyStar19 said...

Im so so so glad your ok Amanda, somtimes we are faced with sharp objects in life that can either stab us or slash us, Im glad you were slashed and not stabbed, much love,
Ally xxxx

Anna said...

love, love, love.
so much love.

dave (silver cowboy statue, bonnaroo boy, fire-blower) just ran off to hawaii to live with his tattoo-apprenticing girlfriend. would've been funny if you two ran into each other.

my housemate says you fell on her at world/inferno. hope to see you in full pretty lady anarchist glory at the next show!

heartbeets!
anna

Sunshine said...

Beautiful well-rounded entry! I wish I could be so eloquent and open in my own blog. (Not the one that this profile links to, but another more private one I write on LiveJournal.) I'm so very freaking happy that your tests came back negative and that your hand is okay! Oh to have seen that little happy-dance.

I need to remember to keep up with your journal. I've been addicted to The Time Being of late (The Church frontman Steve Kilbey's blog).

All the best to you,

~Sunshine
(Kansas City, MO)

Len Tower Jr. said...

a

have you considered that it's another form of applause?

the courtesies extended to a well-turned out "Pretty Lady"?

dressing up, well, and with a considered personal style is both an effort, and an art form, and is worthy of recognition, as desired by the receiver.

i personally extend courtesies to all people i meet who would be receptive.

not only as applause to a "Pretty Lady", but for parents with babes in arm or in tow, people with too many packages, those looking to need a bit of cheer, etc.

best -len

Len Tower Jr. said...

a

i'm quite glad you do not have an auto-immune disease.

i have friends with ra, fibromyalgia, ms, Crohn's disease, and cfids. None of them have more then one a-i disease - which is a small blessing.

they are all among my heros - they all understand Renior's pov - despite the pain and disablity, each live life hard, well, and with passion.

best -len

wasted_life said...

while reading i was getting worried thinking about you having some disease, and it made me realize how much i care about you as a person. you're important to a lot of us for sure. it made me smile to read you were fine.

and that retreat sounded beautiful.

it is nice to have you back. i missed you and your world.

Beautiful_Wretched_Liar said...

I know that if you are back in Boston you are experiencing the same weather we have on the cape right now. I remember the last time we had weather like this. Last year. Do you remember? All of the floodings? Well one of those nights, driving home from my friends house, all of this water hit my car at one. I thought I had hit a coyote or something. But it was just the sky falling. Your voice was coming out of the speakers. Delilah. The mixture of the desperation in your voice and the sky falling down at 11 o'clock at night broke me. I couldn't stop crying. I thought I was going to die. An irrational thought. sure. But I still felt like chicken fucking little. If my world had ended right then... what had I ever lived for? I should have pulled over like all of the other responsible drivers. I didn't I kept driving, swerving, blinded through the night. I lived.

I know this doesn't really relate to your post but tonight reminded me of that incident. And I had to tell you. My sweetest friend. Because you will never judge. You will never try to control my path. You are like the living breathing teddy bear that I can confided in.

Hoping that the rain carries you away to pleasant dreams.

Goodbye, and hello, as always
s

Kristopolis said...

amanda, i am so glad you are back & rejuvenated & okay. i can't wait for your new album, & i believe you when you say it's gonna be amazing.

irenem said...

Jesus, the suspense was KILLING me. I kept thinking, “This is all happening too fast. Way too fast. No. I don’t think I like this very much….” But I’m so glad that nothing serious is going to afflict you from the piano. I was actually listening to one (out of VERY few) of my favorite classical songs. It was Opus 53: Polonaise No. 6 in A-flat major "Heroic"by Chopin; and if I had to put my feelings after reading your blog into a song: that’d be it.

love,
irene :)

Erika said...

O MAN!!!!! Amanda you scarred me! All i could think in the back of my mind while reading this was (FUCK that's it, Amanda won't be able to play in june....possibly a while after that.) I'm very glad your okay and had a wonderful time at yoga boot camp. I went to Hawaii (muai and honolulu) last year and it was AMAZING, great place to commune with nature and relax and rejuvenate.
Hope to hear from you soon, lots of love ~ Erika <3

p.s PLEASE tell us your plans for the summer after the "true colors" tour when you can.

Erika said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
entropyartist said...

Wow, I didn't realize how much your stories and your sharing offer up a kind of escape until just now, when everything has been so crazy, compressed and not-real - and lo - I may be able to make it through the week, just becasue I had this special little break from life.

andrea said...

So, Avril's new album comes out today. I'll be expecting a detailed review from you. We all know the new song is =( so I'm not inclined to go out and snatch the thing up automatically. I figure you can probably find the light in the darkness and shed some of it this way...

andrea

Maarika said...

I'm really glad your finger is okay. Joint injuries are fucking awful.

I like to dance. But I broke my knee in January and needed surgery to fix it. Then I needed physical therapy. It still hurts like a pack of raging monkeys sometimes. I still can't dance.
I've started swimming.

Odd how you never appreciate how perfectly your body works until it's broken.

By the way: I don't believe in Jesus but if I lived in Hawaii I'd go to that "Church" religiously.

Thanks for writing. Like I said before, you have a way with words.

-Lady M.

A plus D said...

I read you blog religiously, but have never posted a comment. Anyway, just wanted to say I'm so relieved to hear that your hand is fine. And thank you for relating it all in such exquisite detail. You're a wonderful writer, and besides the fact that I love your music, it's not like I read anyone else's blog.

Still working on that Dresden Dolls mashup I told you I wanted to make...

Andy said...

sweet.

working with ben folds sounds promising.

Parita said...

disease can be hard to deal with.

Len Tower Jr. said...

life can be hard to deal with.

christina said...

i'll be honest: i scrolled down to the end of this entry to see how your test results turned out! i'm so glad you don't have lupus, i just hope your hand isn't too painful & you are able to perform! (i've had rheumatoid arthritis since the 6th grade, it sucks!)

E.M. Green said...

I am in awe.

My particles are tingling.

rotten said...

So glad you are back and doing fine...checked the damn blog almost everyday...does that mean I have a mundane existance...something out of "Soap Opera" by the Kinks???? Anyway, I am looking forward to the tour..got my tix...will even leave the beach to see you guys...Hope you and your "friend" reconnect...shit like that sux...psyched for the new album too...checked out some Kaiser Chiefs at your suggestions...digging it...also, never really got in to any Ben Folds so that is next on my agenda...good luck with all of that...keep those blogs acomin'

Len Tower Jr. said...

a

if your friend reconnects with you, you could find out it had nothing to do with you.

might be working through some bad stuff by hirself.

best -len

Vincent said...

Is the mystery following people into the dark song "I Will Follow You Into the Dark" by Death Cab for Cutie? Because if it is, I agree that it's quite a wondrous track.

I'm sooooo glad you are alright... I got really worried midway through this... don't worry me like that, I love you too much!! ;)

Anyway... just wanted to drop a line and tell you how talented and wonderful you are. You're definitely a bright spot in my life. Thanks for inspiring me and just being yourself.

Len Tower Jr. said...

film agent . . .

amanda in a full length movie feature? documenraries?

with her voice, she also be great as a narrator, perhaps on PBS ...

watching her journey is going to continue to be interesting.

kinda wish book agent was on the list, she wries so well.

best -len

Jack's Raging Mommy said...

Welcome back!

I hope my Biopsy results are as good news as that :)

Atul said...

Aman-DA! You are such a fucker for leaving out that your results were fine until the last line. Your whole blessed, cursed life flashed before my eyes while I was anxiously reading, and all I really know is from is this blog. Lupus, for Christ's sake! Haven't you ever seen Gray's Anatomy (the movie not the TV show, neither of which I would recommend to you except that show can be enjoyable mindless TV crack...and about a season back Regina was featured on it and that helped build her buzz even more). Maybe it's the future resident intern in me, but for a minute I was so pissed that you would do that, even for art.

Whatever, though. You're ok. And licenced to chill, maharishi style. Welcome back. Honestly, I am so jealous about Ben Folds and Hawaiian lava fields and indoor soccer with the frickin' Kaiser Chiefs and Robyn frykin' Hitchcock with the former Hindu Love Gods...but not your roller coaster ride.

Stay well and I hope there's more fun and unfettered freedom in the future. Also, be careful not to overexercise those tendons,
Atul

spilarygray said...

heh, I can only imagine how relieved you must've been, after how anxious I was for you, reading through the entry, waiting to see what the results were.
Glad to hear you're fine.
Love you♥

Peace On, Rock Out
-Matt

HobbesTheTiger said...

You write a mean blog, as well as a play excellent music. Reading your recent entry about relationships... I've been trying to figure my own shit out for months and I wanted to say, "Thank you. You've helped." Even if it may or may not have been your intention.

No wishes of luck, good or ill, to you. Just... may every day you rise be another day.

- Jeffrey

P.S. The cover you did of Hallelujah in Columbus, OH sometime in 2005 was lovely. See ya!

taz said...

Woha... i kept my breath for long long time while i read, i wanted to get to the end of your post just like it happens to do when you're reading a book and want to know how it ends, want to know that it ends well...but this isn't a book, this is your life that you're sharing with us, so i kept reading and i could finally breath when i read that everything was ok.
Good luck for everything Amanda, I hope to see you playing sometime here in Italy, or at least in Europe.

NikiXDoll1221 said...

omg i got so scared when i thought you had lupus or something. then i read on. woot go amanda your healthy woot woot!!!!!!!!!

Kipper said...

Miss Palmer, I am incredibly relieved at the apparantly fine state of The Finger. That is fantasmodic news.

Is Hawaii where you first decided to cover I Will Follow You into the Dark, then? I fancy myself a DCFC fan and I have to say your cover is probably one of my favorite songs at the mo'.

While you were gone, you inspired me take up violin. The calluses forming slowly at the tips of my fingers are, by logical progression, your fault. I do not mind.

My parents went to Hawaii once. Did you see any banana slugs? They are apparantly huge, yellow, and kind of gross.

-L
in New Jersey
the armpit of our fair nation.

Alyssa said...

Hi,

I want to tell you that I've been listening to your music and loving it. It's the first that I've run into that actually takes a long, hard, realistic look at living with psychological disorders etc. (mood disorder here *waves flag*) The lyrics are gorgeous and powerful in every single song. Listening is like getting drunk, except minus the hangover.

Anyways, I'm sure that's not what you were looking to read... but I read the entry and Did. Not. Breath. until I got to the part where you were okay. And then I went back and read everything else.

Danaoshee said...

I'm so very glad you're ok.
Everyone I know has some illness they're living with, it feels like, and it's enough already.
And I'd be terribly sad about a future with no more of your music.

Belinda said...

its so exciting that you and Ben Folds are collaborating!!! I was thinking that if I was ever in a room with both of you I would feel like such a talentless phoney. You are both such amazing artists! I love how your mind works.

Pevy said...

You live in my alter reality world... yet, frome this other dimension I salute thee Amanda Palmer.

Scott said...

Amanda,

Please be my life partner.

MissaStarr said...

This is my first comment on here, although I've been reading from the beginning.

When I first heard about you working on your new record, I wouldn't have though about Ben Folds. The more I think about it - the more excited I am for it to arrive.

I'm quite glad your finger is alright, I can't imagine how you would feel if you couldn't play music anymore.

I got an e-mail last night that made me estatic - "Last Minute Show in Nashville." You see, I live in Memphis, and you very rarely even come close to my part of the world, so I've never been able to see you play live. Unfortunately, upon reading the e-mail I noticed that it was on Monday, and I have a psychology final, so there's no possible way I can make it. But anyway - Happy early birthday.

-Moriah Starr

Timeandalittleblackcload said...

"May Nothing but Happiness Come Through your Door"

Justin said...

Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off- then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can.

- from Moby Dick

Merle said...

Nice to hear from you again.

Gizmo (not the Gremlin)

lymari said...

aloha amanda!

wish i knew you were in town. would have been fun to see you. i've been missing you since i moved to hawaii.

kalani is great. when i was living on big island i hung out there a lot. i hiked the lava fields everyday. soooooooooo much lava! i've seen people way the fuck out there on the lava building makeshift homes. afterall it is new unclaimed land. like a free gift from mother nature. no human authority figure to say "no, you need to pay me." you just risk her taking it back anytime she wants. last year 40 acres fell off the puna coast. 40 acres - that's a small town as far as i'm concerned.

i remember hiking forever and then noticing a well worn spot. and then a coconut sprouting. then another coconut plant. and another. until finally i stumbled upon a sacred site where coconuts were brought out and given to the earth. the earth then giving live to the coconut trees. talismans strung in the palm leaves. footprints; remnants of prayer dances. i could imagine the scene. there at the edge where the lava meets the ocean. the acrid smelling fume of red hot lava spewing into the ocean. the water crashing violently against the lava cliffs. this sacred spot i will always remember and visit time and again. i will take you there someday.

i've been finding my peace in surfing. ya, totally quit my big fancy job i went to harvard for to work as a surf instructor.

www.GirlsWhoSurf.com

who knew? i never expected to love anything that much that it would change my life so dramatically.

anywho, when the hell are the dresden dolls going to play in honolulu?!!! goddamn!!! miss you tons! - Lymari

wuirbqirbi said...

you bring me back down to earth and i adore you for it.