Tag Archives: Love

Muselet: New Day

18 Aug
A/N:  Images displayed in this essay are not mine–Thank Goddess for Tumblr, Imagebam, and Pinterest.  No copyright infringement intended. Click the image for a link to its origins. Totally unbeta’d, so any mistakes and stumbles are mine, allll mine. This is only a shorty, but of course there is a playlist. Click here to open a new page & listen——>(http://pl.st/p/20984139787)

Here comes the sun

Hello, Lovelies. Long time no musings, I know. Those of you who have been my journey mates these past two-plus years understand that any silence from this site is not indication of similar silence experienced by it’s author. I have been musing. Oh, how I’ve been tumbling through and under and over and every which way through the contemplative immensity these past four, [five?] weeks. It’s a matter of reining it in and sharing the ramblings in a cohesive manner. Clearly, as I’ve proven time and time again, my challenge is succinctness. 

….Since brevity is the soul of wit ~ Shakespeare

When I decided on a whim to post this little ditty, the clock was twenty minutes shy of switching over to “00:00”, proclaiming a new day; one, as Anne Shirley [an early Other herself, as she dreams from her house of Green Gables] jubilantly reminds us contains “no mistakes in it yet”. It has now grown five minutes past midnight. I only wanted to post a little heads-up. To let you know that Musings is coming atcha this weekend whether you are ready or not. I wanted you to know that I. Am. Here. I never left. 

I was inspired to return to this WordPress Wonderland of Otherness for many reasons: because I needed to; because I wanted to; because I have so many words in my head and love in my heart I feared I may implode. Also, because I feel The Shift. The clouds are easing up slightly allowing for precious, nourishing slivers of light to illuminate the sky, warm our faces. 

Also, I never had the chance to properly celebrate Musings’ two year anniversary and I simply cannot let much more time elapse without writing about this glorious, shattering, profound year. And to not acknowledge that is just WRONG. This year has been everything. And the past two months in particular have simply changed the game.  

So I’m writing the celebratory MOO post that I had planned for weeks ago. This was before July 17, before my husband and I made some pretty intense decisions which lends to why we’re today, quite literally, separated by a world;  before I became involved in three funerals, before I made an unexpected but most cathartic return to composing music and finding long-forgotten melodies within. 

I created this space over two years ago because I needed a forum to find my voice and connect with kindreds searching for theirs as well. I wanted to to do something to help dissuade the negativity and maybe do my small part in creating change that I wanted to see in the world around me. No time is more apt or essential than now. 

So I figure: Let’s pick up right where we left off. 

****From my July 31, 2012: Twitlonger

There is one simple, pure, and constant concept that has been a small measure of comfort to me this week. And that is this: nothing, nothing, nothing is black or white. Nothing involving human beings and their emotional capacity can be categorized so easily. There is a gray area. There is an essential consideration that is near and dear to MY heart– of OTHER. That idea that is indefinable, fluid and against simple explanation. Because there is ALWAYS more.

We do NOT know. There is a sequence of events, there are precipitating triggers, there are esoteric factors that we have no access to, and–here’s where it’s crucial to understand– It is not OUR right to access.

No where is there an Admiration Rulebook that states we retain [or deserve] the right to acquire personal, private details in ANYBODY’S lives, let alone regarding people we have never met. We were never invited into their relationship. In fact, Kristen and Rob did everything in their power to preserve and protect what is theirs. They both have countlessly reminded us that idolatry is unwarranted and in the long run, completely, utterly UNFAIR. To ourselves. To them. 

People have asked, begged, prompted me to say something all week, and while it is quite flattering to me that you, of such great, burgeoning minds, seek out my addled brain for guidance, there is another part of me that feels pressure.

Yes I’m a clinical psychotherapist. Yes, I Muse on empowerment and compassion and love. Yes, I am a supporter of Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson: Together, separately, no matter. But I too am wading through stages of grief, loss, confusion. And sometimes, though this ‘twitlonger’ doesn’t reflect that, I am without words and direction too.

Two points I had hoped to make, before this spiraled out of control into a full-on Musings.

1) Musings On Other Queens–this ‘blog’– is not going anywhere. It never was ‘A Kristen Blog’ or ‘A Robsten [ugh, you KNOW how I detest that label] Blog’. It was a space I created so we could talk about the ways we can overcome labels, misconceptions and generalizations. A way to give voice to the underrepresented. It was intended for us to have a forum to encourage SELF-REFLECTION on how we can contribute to the lessening of stereotypes, possibly banishing the bullying and the hate-mongering.

I think we need that capacity more now than ever. And so no, MOO is not closing down or taking a hiatus other than it’s regular breathing schedule as I navigate my 3D life. And BOY is my 3D life colorful this month. Balance, babies, it’s all about balance.

This started it ALL. It aint stopping anytime soon, kiddos

2.) I honestly and soulfully believe that Kristen and Robert will move through this, in a way that is healing and right for Kristen and Robert. Not by our definitions or standards, but theirs. As it should be.

Also, any amount of processing and rehabilitation will take time. 

Sitting on Twitter, or watching entertainment ‘news’ channels obsessively is maybe the most damaging thing we could do right now. And I can say with utmost confidence and authority, that believing wholly in anything the “media” [tabs] churn out is a great disservice to … well, everything, everyone, including Kristen and Robert, the very people that bound us together in the very beginning.

In my twelve years in training as a professional listener…I have learned an open mind is the most compassionate and–most often–prevalent truth in the end. Compassion and support is what Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson need more than anything right now.

Be well and take care of yourselves. Cultivate all of your strengths and blessings in your everyday, tangible life. And while a young couple takes time to assess and evaluate their hopes, aspirations and paths, we can do the same.

See? We’re all rediscovering our humanity together.

In a letter I wrote to my CyberSisters a couple days ago, in the midst of my own personal anguish, I concluded:

“I want to tell you as a marriage and family therapist, that I see this devastation often. It happens. EVERY. DAY. In one form or another.

And, yes, EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. the sun rises again and people-warriors make their way towards it’s warmth.

I have faith. I have so much faith.

So a 22 year old girl is human. She resides with the rest of us mortals. I am so happy for the company.”

I am so happy to be in your company.

****

See you this weekend for the commencement of celebrating Other? Yesssss. All my love and light… KJ

*    *    *

Playlist: 

http://pl.st/p/20984139787

Ho Hey ~ The Lumineers

Ashes and Wine ~ A Fine Frenzy

Breathe Again ~ Little People feat Rachael R

Hold On ~ Alabama Shakes

Prepping The Stew Review

29 Dec

I am apart of all that I have met ~ Alfred Tennyson

Hello my wild beauties…I am holding back tears right now because I’m feeling so frustrated that I cannot sit down and connect with you all in the way that I used to, and in the way that I want to. Last year at this time, I was posting several times a week in preparation for the year-end Stew Review. This year, I’m scrambling for the surface, clawing for any moments where I can hear myself think. I am buried under all the articles and photoshoots I want to discuss with you all, because our Reigning Other Queen had a ridiculous year…in a goooood way.

I told you last time we’d convened that I’d update on Thursday, MOO’s usual update day. That was two Thursdays ago I think. I had wanted to wish you all Happy Holidays, encompassing any observations you and your families made–whether Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanza or …Saturday and Sunday. See, my husband is Muslim… I was raised in a Presbyterian tradition…a few of my best friends-like-family are Jewish, and my Monkey niece leaves out cookies and apples for Santa and his reindeer on Christmas eve.  Throw in one of my jobs–I’m in a management position in the retail of books–so my long holiday hours and public service efforts are undoubtedly shaped and influenced by business plans and sales goals. So the N household is international and all-inclusive, though not locked into one particular path of celebration come the holiday time.

via heartstewarttumblr

But I can still appreciate awesome Holiday Cheer in the form of Kristen Stewart in antlers, y’know?

I just wanted to post this little ditty to let you all know that despite my radio silence over the past month, I am here. In pursuit of elusive balance and bliss as always, but here. And I’ve lots to say. Thank you for answering the call I put out a day or two ago, asking you for your submissions and thoughts  on the awesome year of 2011.

I will post your suggestions as well as some of my own favorites in the MOO Stew Review of 2011 by this Saturday, New Year’s Eve. Also I’ll wrap up the year with a final retrospective Musings in the vein of “What The Fangirl Learned”. Because mah gawd, I was schooled this year in the extremes that people– “fans” they call themselves– move to within this community, and in the nebulous, sometimes nefarious creations of the world-wide web.

Let me just say this…You guys are simply awesome. Never will my faith waver in Musings readers. You all are the classiest, most brilliant, most passionately creative folks I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. And my love letter to you will be coming atcha full-frontal assault, so hold onto your hats and glasses.

But I wanted to thank you for sending in your thoughts about Kristen Jaymes Stewart’s stupendous year…Here’s a little sample of your responses to my question:

What was your favorite Other Queen Moment of 2011?

 “I felt like I could shoot up into the night sky & every pore of my body would shoot light.”

I was broken. For a long time. But it’s over now.

A Rebellious Beauty

A Congruent Confidence

A Royal Premiere

So…I’ll see you tomorrow…and Saturday for our year-end Musings? Much love your way, Lovelies. You seriously rock my socks.

xo, KJ

EMBRACE YOUR OTHER. 

Hestia and Hearth; Stew and You

1 Dec
A/N: The images displayed in this essay are not mine–Thank Goddess for Tumblr, Pinterest and KStewartFan.org. Click the image for a link to pictures’ origins. So very unbeta’d–all mistakes and typos are mine, all mine. Musical playlist and GIVEAWAY NOTES at the bottom. Click the “Sign Me Up!” button in the side panel to receive MOO notifications in your Email…riiiiiight over heeeeeerrrre——->

“Architecture is always the spatial expression of a spiritual decision”

~Ludwig Miche van der Roche 

*waves shyly* Hello, you extraordinary, and profoundly regal rebels! I do hope this new, long-overdue Musings finds you and yours healthy and well. Happy December! I’m sorry I’ve been away for as long as I have, it was never my intention. I was floating amongst tents and wristbands and numerous Breaking Dawn viewings. Then Thanksgiving rolled into town along with my mother, and between my jobs, the holiday season kick-off and family illnesses, I haven’t been able to muse along with you, my favorite people, about one of my favorite people: Kristen Stewart in tooooo long. So, first and foremost, I must tell you:

I MISS YOU! 

When I last posted a full-fledged Musings, it was a day or two before my birthday and I had just started my new job. Suddenly any time I had to myself and to connect with you all became severely limited. I hadn’t even gotten the chance to properly thank you for the unbelievable birthday wishes, messages, blogs (lovingly side-eyes @Mel452 and @Nhess_V), cards, gifts and tweets you sent my way. You all are miraculous.

THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. 

Nothing could be more truthful for me these days than the realization that the further and longer I’m away from something (someone, someplace, some ritual, some Musings) the more valuable it infinitely becomes. You may be wondering why the opening picture for this MOO  is of a fireplace. More specifically, a hearth. Well, with all the traveling, bustling about you and I have been doing this month, and all the promoting and touring that our Reigning Other Queen Kristen and her royal consort Robert have been involved in, I wanted to reconnect with a concept that I have severely neglected and severely missed: Home. 

Goddess of Hearth and Home

My husband N and I live in a small studio apartment in a beautiful, textured, culturally rich city with which I am absolutely in love. I have an inordinate amount of adoration for our home. However, since I was laid off and left BastardNation two years ago, we forewent the luxuries that came with having a well-paying (though soul-draining, heartbreaking) job. Luxuries like: several bedrooms, a dishwasher, or enough square footage for a couch. When we come home from work, the room we step into through our front door is the kitchen/office/coat area. It is  there that we remove our jackets and hats and shoes. If we set our items down outside the designated kitchen/office/coat area, we have now moved into cluttering up the living room/library/dining area. You get what I’m saying. Our space is tiny. It is vulnerable to piles and stacks and clutter. But it is home. And when I’m away from it, I miss it. Writing Musings and connecting with you all? That also is “home” for me. I miss it. Miss you.

appealing clutter. our house will become this in 0.3 seconds.

Since N and I both are gone for almost twelve hours each day, we are outside our little sanctuary far more than we are in. And when I was gone for seven days in November to attend the glorious Breaking Dawn premiere, sleeping in a different bed and location nearly every night, I found myself summoning strength from Hestia, the Greek Goddess of hearth, architecture, community and domesticity.

Ahhh Hestia [she is called Vesta in Roman Mythology]. She, who presides over home, Thanksgiving, fire and cooking. Does Lady Hestia remind you of anyone else, perhaps? A Goddess in her own right, and certainly someone of queenly status?

more at “home” than we’ve witnessed before

Our Rebel Queen has been absolutely remarkable this month. As she approaches the wrap up on a grueling, physical film shoot [Snow White and the Huntsman], she still found it within her capacity to leave her apartment [and current work] in London to tirelessly promote Breaking Dawn in Los Angeles for a week. A couple of observations from this time:

1.)  Kristen loves her home. Meaning, literally, where she physically resideswhich has been London for the past four months. Whenever she was interviewed on this promo blitz, not that I’ve seen even a tenth of the four billion interviews she’s given, Kristen  happily referenced and paid homage to the culture, the people, and the food of her current UK residence.

Footnote: Know who else is English? Just sayin.

She also will gleefully and pridefully speak about her current project–Snow White and the Huntsman. #SWATH

Question: What would be another dream role for you?

Kristen: [pauses. smiling shyly] “Snow White.”

2.) Kristen’s embodiment of home [and Hestia] is not solely on a tangible level. She is utterly grounded and centered around wherever [or whomever] she has created as her hearth. It is her construct–her architecture. She has chosen to surround herself by people, places and energy that provides comfort. Look at the word “hearth”. It is not a coincidence that within that word is an entirely new word,”heart”. The hearth, like the heart, is the essential, integral center of a home, a functioning cell. All basic necessities derive from this “place of warmth, fire and heat”. To sustain life, one must be protected and warm, and have food for sustenance, both gifts bestowed from the hearth. And my Goddess, does she ever exude life and warmth and a settled-ness. 

“Right now on Snow White, I’m having the most fulfilling experience as an actor.”

~Kristen to Entertainment Weekly

I don’t know that our head Majestic Misfit has ever appeared as joyful, animated or exuberant as she has these past few weeks. Her innate confidence and buoyancy seems determined to burst through the reserves placed there previously (perhaps out of protection and shyness).  It’s glorious to behold.

Captivating CoCo

We alluded to Ms. Stewart’s visit to Conan O’Brien’s show earlier, and it served as a reminder to share with you all how it was to see Kristen on the show, first-hand, live. I would be remiss if I didn’t stop and thank you all for your sweet tolerance of me, my blurry iPhone pics and stuttering, sporadic tweets on the days preceding and on November 14, 2011. As you know from reading my MOODrabble a few weeks ago,  I was down in my old hood for a week with the goal of getting to the Breaking Dawn premiere and perhaps maybe, maybe saying hello to our Royal Rebels in person.

I flew into LAX Wednesday evening, and my beloved girl Iris (@Just2CUSmile) was so kind to pick me up and whisk me through L.A. traffic and take me to my hotel, which was across the street from L.A.Live and the Nokia Theater [and #TentCity].

Also, due to careful planning and just-plain-smarts, my dear sister @robkris13, photographer extraordinaire and full-fledged Black Carpet press-pass holder, was waiting at the hotel for me as well. After a much-needed catch-up dinner with Iris, and a game planning session with @robkris13, I fell into bed, trembling with excitement. After only about 4 hours of sleep, I trudged downstairs at 4AM to scope out the spot in line for my wristband…alongside hundreds of other enthusiasts.

my feet as I sat on the curb waiting for the wristband line to start. 4:40AM

There were a few rough moments, not gonna lie, in what would become my ten-hour camping-adventure. The last remaining glimmer of faith I had in Scummit Entertainment dwindled to nil and then was lit on fire; and there were a couple instances where fellow “fans” threw me under the bus without a backwards glance (don’t worry New Zealand girls, I won’t generalize your beautiful country based on your petty actions). But overall, I had the most incredible experience. The only way it could have been better is if Kristen and Rob had fist bumped me and said, “Hey, KJ, glad you could make it here after all. Other on, gurl!”

Armed with good joo-joo cast upon me by @robkris13 who somehow always snags the best breaks at Twilight events (she’s the girl who gets moved to the front row of Hall H when her neighbors cause a scuffle with security at Comic-Con); plus my anchors reminding me to Go Forth:

And my @jhiggs86 Originals:

I procured a few bracelets and a movie pass to see the world premiere of Breaking Dawn with the cast, crew and thousands of others.

So I got the bleacher seats that I wanted, across from the arrivals section of the carpet. Perfect vantage point with room to sit and see above the crowd–I’m only 5’2 and a quarter, it doesn’t make sense for me to be 3-people deep behind a barrier on the Black Carpet. I wouldn’t see jack. It’s why I was always intent on grabbing the bracelet for the Bleacher Seats, not TentCity. And in the end, I got the seat I wanted, but I gave up its front-row status because @Just2CUSmile, Iris–whom I call “IA“– had basically extended an offer to me that I couldn’t refuse.

It was a super-sekrit taping, see. No one knew Kristen was at Conan’s studio in Burbank, just hours before she was to arrive on the Black Carpet for the world premiere of the film. So my friend Iris is a resourceful girl, and when she learned she had access to two VIP tickets for Conan’s taping, she hesitated before asking me if I’d like to accompany her. She knew I’d be cutting it reeeeaaaalllly close by leaving the Breaking Dawn premiere site at Nokia Live to go with her to Burbank to see Kristen. But I couldn’t not go. You know?  I am so, so glad I did. Because I got to see Kristen and her Hottie Guard JB up close, in-person, all calm, lovely and flirty with Conan and his facial hair. I saw with my own eyes Kristen’s unbelievable legs in the StewyStandard 18-inch heels, pre-tennis shoe change-out. For about ten minutes, I was in the same vicinity as Other Royalty.

Our gamble for Team CoCo seats didn’t move without moments of uncertainty, though. IA and I weren’t panicked when Coco’s crew did not announce Ms Stewart’s name as apart of the line up. We understood that Kristen wasn’t actually scheduled to be on the show til Thursday, November 17. But we also knew that Kristen and the Breaking Dawn cast was just on the other side of the filming lot, taping their appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show just an hour or so earlier. The premiere was set to “begin” around 5PM, and Coco was taping at 3PM. That was enough time for Kristen to make it, right?

Poor IA didn’t show it, but later she told me she was inwardly freaking out when we sat through an entire hour of taping, which included the very, uh, cool LL CoolJ’s interview and we had not heard even a whisper of confirmation that our Reigning Other Queen was in the building.

. . .Until IA whisper-shouted: “There’s HBG! HBG!”

I whipped around in my seat, nearly falling out of it, to see a tall, tall, handsome man lurking over by the band ‘s stage. Well, if Kristen’s dashing bodyguard JB is here, then Kristen’s here. Basta. I bounced in my seat, clasped IA’s hands in my own sweaty ones and tried to calm my shite down. We were front and center, maybe three rows back, directly behind the center-stage cameras and cue-card holders. I was going to have a prime view of our Reigning Rebel Queen, y’all. Twice. Here with the fantastic Conan O’Brien, and again from my bleacher seat at the Breaking Dawn premiere. It was a gonna be a good night.

Ahhhh, the magic of television. Conan and Andy changed their ties and Coco himself laughingly told the audience, “PRETEND that it’s THURSDAY, ok? Because our next guest is a surprise, and we’re taping her segment for Thursday’s show. So don’t you all go screaming out loud, ‘It’s MONDAY!’  because it’s not. It’s Thursday.”

When Conan announced who the guest was, our surrounding fellow studio audience memberswho were there to see LL Cool Jgasped aloud and started murmuring. Not exactly Twilight fans, this audience. Not that IA nor I cared, because we were too busy jumping out of our chairs to our feet in a screaming, rousing standing ovation, because we were there to see Kristen Stewart, MoFos!! A handful of others stood up to welcome the Reigning Queen Oher, but I’d like to think in my own little fantasy bubble-world that Iris and I were the loudest and most enthusiastic Stew Supporters in the hizzouse.

So you’ve seen the show, yes? If not, the full video–including what Conan loves about Kristen–can be found on @TeamCoco’s site via THIS LINK—->kristen-stewart-privacy

I know many of you have seen Kristen up close, spoken with her, taken a picture with her, received her autograph. I had not up until this point. I can now confirm that it is no exaggeration when people have said she is simply stunning in person. She is absolutely gorgeous, you guise, seriously. Her skin is pristine, her legs are insane, her smile has the wattage of stadium floodlights. And she is so very humble. And good. It radiates from her in shimmering waves. She is kind and shy but also very calm and thoughtful. Oh and she’s funnnnny! 

See how flustered she makes CoCo? yeah. we get that.

She has a succinct charisma about her; she is compelling. I actually didn’t hear too much of what she said, I was too captivated. It wasn’t until I watched the interview days later that I realized I had only heard maybe 60% of it while in the same room with her. It was a short interview, but a lively, bubbling one, with Conan turning almost feral when Kristen complimented him on his beard. I don’t think Kristen truly understands the love and passion she inspires in her admirers. Maybe a flustered, hissing Conan O’Brien could enhance her awareness of her power?

But again, what I witnessed in this brief glimpse was two-fold. Ms Kristen Stewart is especially fond of and acclimated to British living. And she exudes a deeper, more assured knowing of self as well. She is grounded and contemplative, but also light and witty. She seems to have connected quite profoundly with The Goddess Hestia in the knowledge that she has constructed a home; and is at home–within.

What The Dawn Brings

Still riding high from my Close Encounters with the Beautiful Kind, I was shooting off messages and tweets to my Cyber Sisters, @RobKris13, and  you Twittah-peeps as IA raced from the Burbank studio back to Nokia Theater in LA. I didn’t know what the flip I was going to say to security in order to get to the bleacher seat that I most likely sacrificed in order to see Kristen on CoCo. All I know is that I was grasping JHiggs’ beautiful paintings in my hands and IA all but launched me out of the passenger seat of her car byway of an eject button. I was gasping out frenzied screams thanking IA for her amazing James Bond-esque driving, but she probably didn’t hear me because I was booking it down the street towards …the roar. 

the TentCity peeps are looking good, even after 4 nights of camping

You may have already lost your eyesight over  seen my blurry iPhone pics. Don’t ask me why I didn’t bring my actual digital camera for the occasion. I do not know what to tell you except I was contemplating the virtues of emergency camping gear and rain gear first in case I had to literally camp out…Anyhoo. Because I knew that Kristen had just left Conan’s studio in Burbank, I didn’t feel panicked that I’d miss her or Taylor’s or Rob’s arrival.  Thanks to IA’s mad skillz, I arrived at the perfect time.

i believe this is Melissa Rosenberg’s limo

None of the main cast had arrived yet, and the bleachers were not filled, not really. I did lose my front row spot, but I was at an elevated angle directly across from drop-off area. I can’t remember what exactly I told the three security guards that tried to stop me from climbing into the bleachers past the barricades, but I know I smiled, and showed them my hard-fought-for wristband and explained that I was separated from my party, yadda yadda. They let me through and suddenly I was within dizzying proximity of The Pretty. I knew that my girl @robkris13 was literally on the Black Carpet, in the press pit, snapping away like the talented professional photog that she is, probably having a spiritual experience. She had the best seat in the house, but mine, in my opinion, was a very close second.

hi, Peter!

I had room to sit. I was elevated and could survey the whole plaza and street. My fellow bleacher-cohorts (with the exception of one obnoxiously dramatic woman) were respectful and giddy and energized and we all shared the space contentedly. We exchanged fist bumps, high-fives, giggles and eye-rolling sighs of exasperation when the situation called for such (i.e. aforementioned obnoxious, dramatic woman). And we enjoyed the first moments of interaction and attention when the arriving actors, writers, musicians and models would step out of their vehicles.

The roar only swelled from this point on…I had to conserve my phone battery, since my dumb arse didn’t bring a car charger with me. I didn’t take as many pictures as I would have liked…But thank your lucky stars I practiced restraint, because you would have been subjected to enough blurry pictures to launch a migraine. I’ll show you a couple more, then switch over to the professional pics, ok? Would you like to take a gander at @robkris13‘s amazing shots? Here ya gooooo—-> robkris13Photography

Ashley

Robert

Her Royal Otherness Kristen

Other Queens wear Nikes and Couture gowns

And when Rob, Kristen, and Taylor arrived…they didn’t head to the Black Carpet. They immediately ran behind their SUVs and went straight to the bleachers. Bodyguards in tow, Nikes in place. Both Kristen and Rob got close enough to me, that if I really, really wanted to–though at the risk of causing a brawl–I could send my signs over head for autographs. But I opted against it (this time) and chose to hover back and hold my signs up for them to read if they looked up from their tasks at hand. I was pretty content when both Kristen and Robert lifted their gazes and saw me waving my signs. Pretty content, because I had yet another moment of sharing the physical space with such generous, inspiring, and regal spirits.

And to later see pictures that further confirmed the special bond and fierce protectiveness they have with one another and their relationship…

It’s been over two weeks now since this wonderful event occurred. I’ve seen the film three times (I know, I know, that’s a low number comparatively, right?) I am drastically behind in watching interviews and gawking over such profound moments of beauty, but I don’t mind. Thank you all for bearing with me as I am super late to the party in discussing the sheer magnitude of epicness the Breaking Dawn premiere [and release] bestowed.

I absolutely adored the dress Kristen wore to the World Premiere in Los Angeles. I am gaga over the fact that she wore her Nikes first so that she could move comfortably and swiftly alongside the barriers and bleachers to accommodate as many fans as possible. Her makeup was immaculate and her hair, in the messy, braided bun…well that’s what dreams are made of.

And should we talk about that waist-high skirt-slit????

The color coordination among the Twi Trio just kills me. That is simply too much Pretty for the system. And their friendship and playfulness and support of each other is only made of WIN.

But at the end of the day, after hours of waiting in line, sitting on a sidewalk, lolling around sleep deprived and achey, it’s the wild, assured certainty that Kristen emanates…and the way she and her Rebellious Partner in Crime Robert look at each other that marks this as Game Over for me. Because this is how Hestia and Home and hearth manifests with our Reinging Royal Rebels. In being sure-[Nike] footed, and proud of the work they are producing. In being fulfilled by self acceptance and protection…and acceptance and protection of each other.

Home manifests when operating as a fluid system, in feeling pride in decisions made for oneself and one’s family. Home and hearth is expressed in the knowledge that no matter where we physically are or how long we are away, we have a steadfast, earnest, inner compass as a guide for our return.

you are my home.

Gratitude for Stew and You 

…which leads me to the concluding thoughts for tonight’s essay. I have felt disconnected and a little sad  because I haven’t been as in touch with you, and with writing MOO [i.e. following Bliss]. Last year for Thanksgiving, I listed all things I was grateful for since joining this community and Musing aloud with you all. I want to pay homage to that event by reiterating my gratitude this year as well, albeit a few days late. I have been apart of the K/R/Twi Community since pre-Twilight, Summer 2008. I only started writing MOO in June of last year. Never in my wildest, most medicated dreams did I foresee meeting such extraordinary people; being privy to a passionate group of #OtherRebels boasting brilliant, crazy ideas and philosophies, and even bigger, exuberant, inspiring hearts.

In honor of Thanksgiving and the Goddess Hestia, who presides over Hearth, Home, Family and Community, I declare utmost gratitude for the lovely, the fierce and rebellious Ms Kristen Jaymes Stewart and her Warrior Poet Robert Thomas Pattinson. For without his and her independent, majestic, unconventional beauty, I may not have found the gumption to begin Musing aloud with you. And if I hadn’t opened my big, rambling, chattering mouth, I probably never would have met you all. I probably wouldn’t have decided to fly down to LA to try to camp out for movie tickets and a chance to see famous, pretty rebels in person. I probably would not have met you– you who are inspiring warriors and the dearest of dear friends. I am unspeakably humbled by your presence in my life. You are home for me.

Next time we’re going to make a dent in all the rebel greatness by discussing the glorious Breaking Dawn UK Premiere, which was the producer of a few Kristen and Robert pictures that may be the best. Ever. 

We’ll talk Entertainment Weekly, aka, The Interview In Which I Need To Make T-Shirts Out Of Every Verbal Statement Made, #FuckYouBothInTheFaceForLaughing….. and I’ve got an extra copy or two of EW to give away to you lovelies…

And we’ll actually talk about the movie itself. Hopefully you all will have seen it by then, so there won’t be any spoilers. Until we meet again, I wanted to let you know that I have not one but two magazine giveaways happening this week. Check the A/N for details and how to enter. Serious love and gratitude goes out to every single one of you who for some reason check in with me and read my loquacious monologues. I will see you sooner than later, Lovelies. Always, KJ

We are Other.

Kristen is Other.

Others recognize Home as not a solely tangible idea.

Embrace your Other.

*    *    *

A/N:

Special gropes and love to:

My CyberSisters/SmutSisters/GoodReads Girls

my bouffant

Heather Ree~ my dearest: Welcome to Twilight, baby.

@Mel452 and @Nhess_V

@allthingsHHH and @SoCalMom2Four ~ it was a pleasure meeting you, lovely ladies

@RobKris13 … @Just2CUSmile and Mari-Pai who made my time in L.A. simply sublime

It’s GIVEAWAY TIME!!!!  

I have one copy of GQUK for you….

and two copies of Glamour to give away… 

TO ENTER the GIVEAWAY: Just answer a question from the magazine you’re interested in when you leave your comment…..

For GQUK:  Kristen cites ‘On The Road’ as her ‘first-ever favourite book’. What is your first-ever favourite book, and would you accept the role [and responsibility] of bringing it to film?

For Glamour: Kristen advises honesty and knowing yourself as the key to relationships. What would you advise fellow #Others on relating…?

 ESSAY’s MUSIC PLAYLIST

What You Wanted ~Angus & Julia Stone

Let Me Sign ~ Robert Pattinson

Islands in the Stream ~ Constantines and Feist

Let’s Get Lost ~ Bat For Lashes feat Beck

Falling ~ Florence and the Machine


Letters To Muses (and Whoa, W)

11 Aug
A/N: This is unbeta’d per usual. Please forgive me the typos, grammatical slips and bobbles. I do not own the images featured in today’s essay, and I try to embed the links to their original owners/creators . Just click the pics…Bowing down to Tumblr and my newest addiction inspiration Pinterest.

Dear loveliest Rebel Royals and Majestic Misfits,

I have become a big filthy liar…yet again. Last time I said that I’d return to the Musings format that included both What The Fangirl Learned  as well as feature a new Royal Rebel in this post, and that is simply not the case today I’m afraid. Nope. Not when I woke up this morning and was greeted with such epic goodness in the form of a new joint Kristen and Rob interview for Breaking Dawn as featured in Entertainment Weekly (aka The biggest Twi FanGirls aside from @JoshuaHorowitz). 

As you already knew, since a lot of you are in a different time zone than I, EW included a 7 page spread in this Fall Movie Preview Issue (there are other movies released this Fall, not that you would know it) featuring the much-sought-after-though-rare joint interview with our Reigning Other Queen Kristen and her always illuminating partner Robert Pattinson. One of Kristen’s biggest supporters, director Bill Condon, also discussed insight and thoughts on the filming process.

I won’t rehash the interview with you all, firstly because I don’t have the magazine in my paws at this moment and I would like to comment and respond to something concrete (I’m all tactile and shit); and secondly, because this time tomorrow, you all will have probably already read, memorized and maybe created a gorgeous Tumblr edit featuring your own very favorite quotes from that interview. So this is me merely letting you readers know that I think you’re super-swell, and I’d like to ask you for forgiveness for not posting a timely Musings nor one that highlights the topics I had hoped to discuss with you. We can savor the lovelieness of the EW pictures and article together, though mmkay? I figured you’re all cool with it. Especially after glimpsing sputter-inducing pictures like:

Edward, LOOK at your HAWT new wife! And you're playing CHESS?

And zingy exchanges between Kristen and Rob such as:

Kristen: Now that I’ve seen parts of it [the final movie], Jacob and Bella’s chemistry in this movie is better than it’s ever been.

Rob: [Faux-glares at Stewart]. So uncool. 

Rob and Kristen, I mean, Edward and Bella enjoying a stroll

Kristen: [On finishing the final filming of the saga] It was oddly emotional the first time I got to set and saw everything and everybody.

Rob: Yeah, you were really sweet when you first showed up.

Kristen: Oh, shush. 

They would go on to “shush” each other, and speak of marriage and relationships and machinations of “chewing” through the brutal, bloody childbirth scene….It’s a fantastic interview. One of their very best in recent memory. Comfortable, light, playful and teeming with intimacy and admiration. Great enough to prompt me to rethink my topic of discussion for today’s essay.

I figured I would speak about the risks and benefits of participating in the work we love–our life’s work–as prompted by observing the joy and pride Ms Stewart invests and reciprocates within her own craft. As we witnessed her confident enthusiasm at Comic Con last month,

and rejoiced along with her when she arrived in London to begin production of Snow White and the Huntsman;

I  planned on discussing with you about how we can ensure such delight and pride in our own chosen paths and professions; to explore the tremendous courage it takes to embark on a new project as Kristen is, and to revisit our own steps taken to pursue our true bliss. Are you doing what you would like to, versus what you’re expected to do?  Are you settling? Are you taking the steps on the path that feels most fulfilling to you? It has been awhile since we’ve talked about following Bliss, hasn’t it, friends?

courage to be creative=following the bliss

My friend and fellow bliss-pursuer, @DeeDreamer16 linked me to an incredibly relevant blog post at–>> InOverYourHead.net . The author, Julien Smith, contemplates whether being lackadaisical is a major indicator that we are not following our bliss, not practicing and enacting our Life’s Work. Smith wonders if our nonchalant way of viewing our daily tasks in fact makes us useless. I gotta say, I tend to agree. If we’re not at least somewhat daunted by our goals, then why have them at all? The minute we become complacent with our surroundings, we lose the edge, the motivating elements that push us onward, towards the finish line…onward towards risk and and perhaps satisfying, glorious rewards that may include self-confidence, monetary security, a compassionate connection with others, meaningful personal relationships, pride in doing something for yourself, a contribution to humanity.

#bliss

I want to tell you, you Unconventional Beauties, that I’m pursuing a couple of projects for the Magical Little Practice and in some of my writing…and I’m absolutely quaking in my Chucks. I guess I haven’t grown too comfortable, as I feared I might when I was laid off from BastardNation two years ago. I’m a bit relieved to recognize  that I have not become useless and rote, while I easily could have. I’m freakin petrified. So I guess I’m on the right path after all.

Kristen, our Warrior Rebel, is moving onto her first high profile role since wrapping The Twilight Saga. She is stepping from the familiar perimeters of her co-stars (including her “never confirmed but obvious boyfriend” ~EW …WAT) and crew, from a character she embodied and inhabited for four years towards some unchartered territory. She is playing Snow White, Ms Badass Royal Rebel herself. She is shedding the comfortable skin of Bella Swan Cullen and embracing a new (literally) set of armor. Princess Snow is steadfast, precocious and full of conviction. She also, per Kristen’s report, is terrified. Except that instead of succumbing to the fear, Snow White is channeling it, using the uncertainty or doubt as kinetic fuel for her limbs and for her voice…She emerges empowered, confident and beautiful….and not at all surprisingly…This summer, so is Kristen Jaymes Stewart.

So here, my Other Warriors, is the reason why I cannot write anything more today about following Bliss and why I cannot find the words to illustrate my lessons learned as a fangirl…or why I cannot introduce another Royal Rebel this week. Because Kristen Stewart, our extraordinary and staggeringly stunning Reigning Other Queen, has arrived by way of a truly royal carriage: W Magazine. The photos and interview dropped online today, and after I picked myself off the floor from a dead faint, I realized I had absolutely no words. NO WORDS with which to construct a proper new Musings. And I’m typically a wordy, wordy bitch. So I sign off my letter to you MOO Readers requesting your forgiveness… but something tells me you don’t really mind. If you’re even reading these ramblings anymore. Because, yeah. Kristen looks fucking phenomenal. And she appears poised and ready. to. go. That’s all we really need to know right now.  That and how great I think you all are. You serve as my muses every day…just as our Reigning Queen does.

I would like to articulate to you one day soon how honored I am that some of you have chosen me to be a sounding board and guide as you pursue your own blissful endeavors. The talent you possess knocks my socks off. I will tell you as much personally if and when I get the chance…Until then, check you at the bottom for a couple of announcements, my Lovelies. Take care of yourselves and each other. Continue following the Bliss and embracing your Other. xo, KJ

And I fucking love the way you growled and sneered just a little bit there in your declaration of love, Ms Stewart. Anyhoo, the following letter is just a note of appreciation to The Muse Kristen herself..a muse for me, for MOO, for the masses….

Dear Kristen,

I don’t think you quite understand the profundity of power you hold. You have stricken myself and other extremely eloquent and erudite friends/bloggers/writers/artists/Intellectuals/KristenSupporters/OtherSupporters completely wordless. Stunned. And it’s not just because of the loving, yearning dynamic you and Robert exhibit in those Breaking Dawn/EW pictures nor the glam-vixen beckoning to us from the cover of W. Arguably, this new photo spread and interview (plus screen tests, please, pliss can we see the outtakes of this otherworldly shoot??) for featuring photographs by Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott; and Styling by Edward Enninful (bowing down) is your most spectacular to date. You invoke the spirit and ferocious beauty reminiscent of Bardot, Hepburn (Audrey and Kate), Fonda, Priscilla P, and Jackie O with your piercing, cat-lined, green eyes and tousled, voluminous bouffant; the leather, the fur, the pillow lips…

This is the most glamorous and unabashedly sexy version of you I’ve ever seen, but I believe that you have reached this pinnacle of smolder due to the collaboration of external assistance–your makeup artist and hair stylists are genius–with your luminous inner facilities. You are congruent and authentic. You are kind, but reserved; sensitive but guarded; Strong but not impenetrable; confident but not arrogant. We’ve watched you grow more comfortable and sure-footed in your own capacity to communicate your truth over the years, and it’s that quiet certainty that you exude that pushes you beyond the barriers of “lovely”, and into the realm instead of  resplendence. 

You tell W Magazine in your extremely cool and captivating screen tests what you were conscious of; your moment-to-moment awareness while growing up:

“I have….that so-called boyish quality was something that I was deathly self-conscious about when I was younger. I was, like, No, I’m a girl. Actually, I’m still embarrassed to say that.”

Uh. Yes. Yes you are indeed a girl. An astonishingly accomplished and genuine girl. You’re an excellent role model for anyone seeking an authentic guide…and an inspiring ambassador for #Other.

You said that upon filming your final, final scene for Breaking Dawn,

“I felt like I could shoot up into the night sky and every pore of my body would shoot light.”

I promise, you could…and you do. Thank you for providing some light, Kristen. Because now…You’ve sparked a whole new movement. Your supporters are pioneering, fierce, ambitious, genuine, confident, sensitive and uniquely gifted warriors, just like you. And we’re with you all the way. Keep going, Your Majesty, keep going. In awed gratitude, KJ

We Are Other.

Kristen Is Other.

Others exude light that can spark a new movement.

Embrace Your Other.

*   *   *

QUESTION(S):  Are you taking the steps along a fulfilling path? Are you settling? Have you recovered long enough from the shock of the W shoot and interview to share your reactions? 

A/N: I’m pursuing a couple of personal projects and business plans these next few weeks so I don’t think I will be able to write another full-fledged Musings for a little while. Quite possibly I’ll be back around Aug 23rd, but if Aug 28th rolls around and you haven’t heard from me, don’t panic. I’m leaving tomorrow for my hometown, to spend time with family, participate in some renovations and stroll down memory lane (could be traumatic, actually). I also will be seeing my gals from the KSIBTU Crew to celebrate Iris’s birthday in person. I will hopefully spend some time with my Cyber Soul Sisters @Mari and @RobKris13 as well (and maybe see Rob and Sam at the grocery store as they re-stock the kitchen?). Plus, I’ve some Red Cross projects I’m participating in, as well as an exciting writing adventure about which I’ll hopefully be able to elaborate on with you soon. Take care you gorgeous rabble rousers, and I’ll see you in a few weeks. Where we can talk Good Reads, Ramadan, the late Amy Winehouse, Sam Bradley, Cancer Bites and of course..Kristen Stewart and Otherness. Yours, xo, KJ

Shoutouts and SqueezieHugs:
My lovelies: @Kate_Suena and @MyCleverAlias
My sounding board and constant-cheerleader: Bouffant
My Aussie Posse: @Ophelia2010, @Justice_Aussie & @Mel452        
To sparks in the dark and my muses for words: @107_yroldVirgin and @TeamSmella23         
It’s my friend @TheRainGirl4’s BIRTHDAY tomorrow (Aug 12)!  Go and wish her love and schmexy thoughts for inspiration, and check out her fics: http://www.fanfiction.net/u/2185580/
PLAYLIST FOR TODAY’S ESSAY: 
Head Full of Doubt ~ Avett Brothers
The Funeral ~ Band of Horses
Gray or Blue ~ Jay May 
The First Day of My Life ~ Bright Eyes

Within and Beside You

28 Jul
A/N: The images & lyrics featured here are not mine. Many resources are cited in embeds if you click the pictures. Song lyrics cited in the tail-end A/N along with today’s playlist. This essay is embarrassingly unbeta’ed. Be kind.

Open and just hold the lantern in the doorway

For the freedom of it

And you take the night air through your nostrils

And you breathe in out, in out

And you breathe just like that, just like that

Ohai there my loveliest of lovelies! Well, my Beauties, I am not even going to attempt to cover all facets of  the supreme epicness that erupted from this year’s San Diego Comic Con. Most of you witnessed it first hand either in San Diego after waiting in line for days (Props to my warrior girls @RobKris13and @Edmett) or by hovering around your computers watching a live-blogging and Twitter feed from morning til night. And the numerous blogs and sites were superb in gathering and posting images, sound bytes, and video clips for the fandom faster than a Cullen driving a Volvo, so we were never left wanting for long. You can read the accounts and the interviews to your heart’s content all over the place for hours and still have footage you didn’t get to yet. There’s a lot, is what I’m saying. I don’t need to add my tangential ramblings to the cacophony, so today’s Musings will be my attempt at being succinct *snickers* and hopefully not repetitive. Let’s see how that goes, mmkay? But I wanted to highlight what I thought lent to the reasons for our Rebel Queen’s rousingly successful Comic Con weekend and why her pristine beauty somehow grew demonstrably more profound . Kristen Brought. It. This was the best she has ever been. EVER.  What is our Unconventional Beauty’s secret? While  all the cooking channel viewing and fight training have certainly contributed, I’m willing to wager  that her impossible loveliness is in response to something more subtle, and personal. So let’s explore this further, yes? Ok, Cats, put your mittens around your kittens, and A-WAY we GO!’ (name that quote and I’ll love you for always).

Beauty In Loving The Craft

And we saw her standing there

Our first glimpse at our reigning Other Queen before the Breaking Dawn Press Panel arrived in the form of the above picture, and the accompaniment of gasps and endless—> !!!!!!!! 8302%)#!@$%@&-<–the joys of communicating emotions in cyberspace. However, the incoherency was understandable, in my opinion. Her hair in tousled waves framing her immaculate skin above a sheer top revealing the black bra beneath, Ms Stewart appeared effortlessly sexy and gorgeous.

And then she sat down at the microphone for the panel, flanked by her amorous colleagues (including the calm and gifted director Bill Condon), and spoke candidly, excitedly and engagingly with the press amid flashing lightbulbs and murmurs.Within moments, it was evident that  the girl deemed by previous critics and naysayers as “awkward, uncomfortable and hostile” was no more. Ladies and Gentlemen, your Reigning Other Queen has arrived.

Is this Heaven or…

We always knew she was a lovely gal, but she has far transcended that descriptor it’s almost insulting. I could wax poetic about her flawless complexion and luminous eyes for years, but I want to acknowledge the unapparent internal structures lending to her almost otherworldly loveliness. It has been said that true beauty emanates from the goodness and light within. Kristen’s light derives from a newfound self-assuredness Over the past year she has gained confidence by way of  interpersonal work in staying centered and trusting her inner compass. She tuned out the constant barrage of criticisms and heckling from haters and from those who simply do not get it. She became involved in highly respected film ventures a la’ On The Road and she maintained close contact with her longtime supportive network (her family, her partner, her work team including the lovely Ruth and the constant John). She also continued to research challenging and compelling work projects.

Film industry  greats and Stew-colleagues such as Sean Penn and Jodie Foster have raved about Kristen’s accurate instincts and sagacious decisions around projects she pursues and people with whom she endeavors to work. It is the home stretch of what will be a five-year project of Twilight. Kristen’s instincts as a seventeen-year-old Indie film actress did not lead her astray. When she first spoke with Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke in 2007 regarding potentially taking on the role of Bella Swan in the film adaptation, Kristen reports she accepted the job  because she felt an affinity with the awkward, shy protagonist and her path towards self-awareness. Because Kristen felt that there was an honest, universal, relatable story about Bella and her great love Edward.

And what a story it is. And how correct Ms Stewart is. She committed in every way (as Kristen Stewart does) to the role in what she thought was a “small independent film” with a large readership. Four years and three Comic Cons later, her colleagues of past, present and future, as well as the very late-to-the-party media community are bestowing accolades for the fierce and refreshing force that is Kristen Jaymes Stewart. Her confidence is derived from knowing that she was correct in following her instincts and in her investment in the work. She loves what she does for a living and it shows. There’s congruency–what you see is truly what you get–that indicates less tension and more certainty. There isn’t a need to downplay or mask  joy or displeasure (if that be the case) felt. And we can see her. All of her. The positive, confirming feedback is pouring in. SHE. WAS. RIGHT.

And she is DEFINITELY en pointe again. And if we thought her comfortable lightheartedness at Breaking Dawn’s Panel was illuminating, then hold onto your hats and glasses, folks, because her appearance at the panel for Snow White and The Huntsman two days later was stunning 

I did not find Kristen’s decision to take on the role of Snow White particularly alarming. I’ve read an earlier incarnation of the script and found myself nodding in enthusiasm as we learned that Ms White wasn’t going to be just your average singing Disney cartoon. It made sense to me and I felt connected to the message of this incarnation of The Fairest of Them All. This Snow White, Kristen Stewart’s Snow White would be a strong, courageous warrior and ambassador to The People. When Kristen walked out on stage Saturday afternoon for the Q & A session for SWATH, I felt the distinct chills in knowing that we are witnessing the evolution of royalty. 

A Beautiful Ferocity

You’ve probably seen the Comic Con panel videos by now. If you haven’t, and I understand if that’s the case–there are SO many goodies it overwhelms– check @Robstenation‘s site for the videos: here for Breaking Dawn  and for the Youtube version, click–> here for Snow White and The Huntsman via @epnebelle. Also I encourage you to visit a SWATH Fansite created and ran by a couple friends of mine, @Dancer1 and @Cheermom called The Enchanting Beauty. You’ll find the latest news for SWATH production and  Kristen  without the gossip.

There are noticeable differences in Kristen between Thursday’s Breaking Dawn interviews and SWATH’s panel. For one thing, Kristen and her SWATH co-stars have barely spent any time together as they’ve all been working on other films. And for another, discussing, defending and explaining Isabella Swan Cullen’s actions and motivations are so deeply ingrained for Kristen after these several years, there were some slip-ups, and blurred lines between Kristen’s and Bella’s identities. Mostly though, I would attribute Kristen’s comfort in discussing Bella because she has had the luxury of marinating in and portraying a character over a longer, wider arc of time than most film roles allow. And Kristen is a passionate defender of her Bella.

*raises eyebrow* mmmhmm

But for the Snow White panel, we caught glimpses of Kristen in the company of extremely attractive new co-stars, exhibiting an eagerness, curiosity and pride on a level unfamiliar to us. Between her playful and almost sisterly-like banter with Charlize Theron, and her witty and self-deprecating responses to questions, Kristen, passionate and proud SWATH cast member, answered the call to portray the Beautiful Royal Hellion Snow White. 

It probably doesn’t hurt that the cast and crew boasts Oscar nominees and winners, as well as some of Britain’s acting elite (HELLO Ian McShane and Bob Hoskins). And these promo shots of the leads in costume…? *sputtering*

Truly a Rebel Royal, yes? 

Though the project is still in pre-production, the SWATH Panel at Comic Con sufficiently raised the bar and generated overwhelmingly positive buzz from..like, everyone, including the press and respectable journalists. Forbes journalist E.D. Kain writes:

 “But if that still shot of Kristen Stewart [up above] is any indication, I will be lining up for tickets when Snow White and the Huntsman hits theatres.”

There is something extremely awe-inspiring about people who face situations that are unchartered. Quitting a job one has had for years to participate in the construction of a starter company; speaking truth when everyone around you has been dishonest. Kristen is leaving behind the usual art house indie films she calls home, as well as the enveloping, familiar arms of her Twilight family to take on a film touted as on par with Lord of The Rings (oh HELL yes). There is a ferocity about this decision that is so very Kristen and so very Other. 

 Beauty Surrounds Her  

You say which way, which way

That’s all right, we’ve gotten hip to it

Behind you, beside you, beside you

Since the beginning days of Twilight Tuesdays and pre-Twitterazzi, Kristen and Robert have sought each other’s company and support as they catapulted from quiet obscurity into the view finder for millions of  rapt “fans”. A large factor in Kristen’s almost ethereal Comic Con appearance is the presence of love, support and encouragement in her immediate circle. Both Rob and Kristen have referred to one another as “my best friend”, and Kristen includes Taylor among a small group of people she “would do anything for” in the name of protection.

In my psychotherapy practice, I often recommend and encourage my clients to attend group counseling sessions in addition to individual sessions. I do this because there is a basic propensity for people to gravitate towards one another, especially when bound by similar experiences. And healing expedites when we have partners and supportive players on our side. Rob has mentioned in interviews in the past that because he and Kristen moved through the utter chaos of becoming famous together at the exact same time, they shared a deep and loyal bond, running even deeper than their immediate, easy friendship.  No one can quite understand the challenges and successes that come from being thrown into public consumption the way that Kristen, Rob and to a similar degree, Taylor can. They have become their own little huddle. #BesideYou

At the last Comic Con the Twi-Trio attended, (2009), Kristen literally took time out of  her shooting schedule for The Runaways to attend the convention to talk about the heartbreak and depression she had to communicate on-screen as Bella Swan. While some people heard Kristen’s words, she was more-often-than not defined by and questioned about her hair style (called a shag, not a mullet), and the Bullshit People and Haterade-drinkers skulked off and created wholly new websites and chat forums to bash Kristen. When asked about Kristen’s hair by an entertainment reporter, Kristen’s friend and confidante Taylor declared, “I think she looks sexy”.

Meanwhile, Rob, Kristen’s accomplice in Otherness, stared lovingly at her the. whole. time…This year, in the debut of Confi-ConStew, Kristen returned the supportive, encouraging, uh, appreciation for Rob and his Cosmopolis half-hawk.

saucy

Isn’t it fun having supportive ridonk sexy partners in crime? Of course, Rob’s hair didn’t spark anything remotely close to the riot that Kristen’s shag did. Don’t think that Rob didn’t notice the hypocrisy, by the way. Robert Pattinson is a clever, observant bloke. He attended Comic Con with his unusual hairstyle full-well knowing that people would most likely comment, judge, and question him. I actually fist-pumped when I caught a glimpse of his interesting coif. I noticed he had cut it even shorter than how he wore it for the Cosmopolis shoot. Whether it was his intent or not, Rob drew attention to his hair and his just-completed, non-Twilight film while simultaneously illuminating the double standards that “supporters” in this fandom practiced all the time. Why is it that Rob is revered and celebrated as “quirky” and “charming” for rocking a half-hawk at Comic Con while Kristen, having her hair styled as Joan Jett for her [awesome] work in The Runaways was ripped to shreds and called (and still called) every derogatory name in the Smack Book??

C’mon, Ladies. We can do better than this.

Something to think about, no? Bottom line: One more reason Kristen shined at San Diego Comic Con this year was due to the reassuring and encompassing presence of her dearest Accomplices in Otherness. Of course Rob and Taylor have faith in Kristen, they always have. But it was evident as the Breaking Dawn and SWATH panels progressed through the convention, that dozens if not hundreds of folks were finally jumping on board the KSTEW Support Train. One fellow leading the Kristen Stewart Fan Club charge was the kind and visionary director of Breaking Dawn, Bill Condon. Mr Condon may have praised Kristen’s dedication and love for the story in six different occasions. He is Team Kristen all the way. Another new mentor and commanding Rebel Beauty in Kristen’s supportive group appears to be another Rebel Queen~

A Beautiful Congruency

‘Cause I need Freedom now

And I need to know how

To live my life as it’s meant to be

Can you spot our Rebel Other Queen?

While all her Twilight co-stars wore dresses and stilettos…what did our girl wear? *HUGE GRIN* The final point I wanted to highlight this week was congruency. In geometry, congruency is when lines are the same size and shape. In philosophy and sociology, congruency refers to harmony between actions and ideas. In psychotherapy, someone is acting congruent when they are speaking of feeling a certain emotion, and their face and body language reflects said emotions. Happiness and excitement may look something like this:

When I say I’m a defender of Others and Misfits, I will act accordingly. You will not witness me throwing insults or jokes around at the expense of someone who has a different appearance or set of beliefs from my own. Neither will you witness Kristen acting incongruently. If she is nervous, you’ll know it. She’ll bounce that knee all over the place, and bite her nails to the quick in between interview questions. What you see is what you get. The reason Kristen Stewart is our Ambassador of Other is because she never  falsifies who she is, even when she is pressured by outside sources (um, MEDIA TRAINING? Are you kidding me??) to conform to the out-dated cookie-cutter ideal.

Congruency is Kristen exhibiting pride in and excitement about the choices she’s made in her profession. It is in knowing that she will be in a very physically demanding role with SWATH (“I’ll have swords and cool weapons”) and preparing herself by training in horseback riding, yoga and weapon-wielding.

It is in the way she is not hiding the affection and respect she holds for her partner Robert. It’s lovely to see their open, mutual affection for one another…Not that he  could ever effectively downplay his admiration for her, but still…The one and only joint interview for the press produced their most warm, inviting and organic interaction of the whole Comic Con weekend. It was mesmerizing to behold, even though it was only 3 minutes long. A content, confident, open, uninhibited, supported and cherished young woman again redefined an antiquated idea of “Beauty”.

Well, my lovelies. There you have it. Those are my thoughts on the jaw-dropping awesomeness of Comic Con 2011 and the Other Legacy that is our Reigning Other Queen. I attributed her heightened (how is that possible??) beauty to her confidence and the confirmation of her solid intuition; also her congruency and her amazingly constant and unconditional support team. There’s excitement  and eagerness for her upcoming projects and the love she feels for her craft.  Ahhh, love. Let’s not forget: She is loved and she loves in return. And it shows. That may be the best reason of all for Kristen’s transcendence this week.

We are Other.

Kristen is Other.

Others realize that beauty cultivates from within and beside us.

Embrace Your Other.

*    *    *

QUESTIONS: What were your reactions to Comic Con? What elements contribute to your confidence and beauty? Do you love your work? Do you surround yourself with supportive family and friends? Are you congruently (authentically) living your life?

A/N: Next time I’m resuming the usual MOO outline featuring “What The Fangirl Learned” and  a new Rebel Royal. You were lovely with suggestions last week, btw, thank you! You can expect a couple little stories about gals named Christina and Ellen in the near future.

Squeezey Hugs and Sloppy Kisses To:

@Nhess_V for always, always spreading the Other Support and Musings postings all over the place each and every week.

@Mel452, my Aussie Darl for having a BIRTHDAY this week!

@DeeDreamer16 for always checking in on me …and even though she didn’t mention it, for celebrating a BIRTHDAY as well recently.

Bouffant. For listening to me talk shit out. Per usual.

Katie. For sharing the best conversations EVER and pulling me out of the funk when I go there.

Lyric excerpts featured: 

Beside you ~ Van Morrison

The Cave~ Mumford and Sons

Essay Playlist: 

What I Am ~ Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians

Santa Maria~ Gotan Project

The Cave ~ Mumford and Sons

A Light From Within (Part 1)

20 Jun
A/N: Most images seen in this posting are not the property of nor created by ©MusingsOnOther. Photos featuring ©Red Cross Disaster Relief in Clinton, MS and Joplin, MO, however, are owned by this author (KJN). Today’s essay, per usual, is unbeta’d and any typos or grammar bobbles are all mine. Also, for whatever reason, PlayList disallowed the Auto-start feature, despite my and Buff’s attempts at usurping. To hear today’s music Playlist, hit PLAY on the player in the right-hand column (below the Twitter Feed) —–>
Whatever day this is that I actually post, I imagine it’s not my usual Thursday. I hope to get back on schedule soon. I thank you for flowing with me.   
“People are like stained – glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.” ~Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

*Takes deep breath* There you are, and here I am. Hello, you beautiful, Majestic Misfits. It has been over a month since I’ve posted a New MOO and I am admittedly nervous and shaky. I feel out of practice, super raw and tentative but at the same time eager to reconnect with you all. SO. MUCH. HAS. HAPPENED. And on so many different levels. In the name of confidentiality, and sensitivity to trauma that folks have experienced, I have spent the past week weighing the options of what to share and how to share. . .I am not even quite sure where to begin, so I guess I’ll …just…jump in.

It was ‘A Time’

So, the last MOO essay  I penned posted on May 15. We talked about the Twirling Other Goddess Stevie Nicks, and we explored what it meant to MOther, even if it was against society’s definitions (We’re Others. It’s how we roll). We also surveyed how we women can be both supportive and simultaneously destructive forces out there, especially towards fellow women. Then I shared with you all that I was a few days away from leaving for my first national Red Cross assignment as a licensed clinician on the Disaster Response Team.

I do not think I will ever truly have enough (or appropriate) words to justifiably describe the people, the agonizing pain of loss, or the brilliant strength and faith of humanity I encountered. But I will try and share a few stories with you here (and that’s what PART 2 of this post will be).  In the seminal TV show My So-Called Life, Angela Chase (portrayed by a featured Royal Rebel Claire Danes), Rayanne and Rickie ponder the glory of connecting with other people for a larger purpose outside themselves, and they simply refer to that process as “A Time”. Bear with me as I attempt to begin recalling the people and the moments that comprise the most life-changing, profound ‘Time’ I’ve ever had the honor of witnessing.

I left May 23 for Clinton, Mississippi to offer relief and counseling support to the men and women who had already been out providing food, shelter and Psychological First Aid to the survivors of the storms and destructive flooding out in the communities near the Mississippi River. What I came to find out later was that this Disaster Relief Operation (DRO or DR) was winding down. I had been called in to debrief and support the volunteers and Red Cross staff, some of whom had been in the trenches for 4o days already.

Here’s what I was struck by, while in Mississippi, other than the sheer elation it was to spell out the state’s name voluntarily, and not because I was in a spelling bee:

It’s beautifully green and lush in the most mundane places. Tree-lined highways (empty of traffic) greeted me on the drive from the gas station to Headquarters; and, to the market and to the shelter where I met with clients. See, I grew up in L.A. County, California, where any greenery, if not in protected parks–or smoked–is a rarity. Concrete utopia shrouded in brown air. Even where I live now, any lush growth and flowers are reserved for the national park.

But really, what blew my mind were the PEOPLE. The people–strangers to me–were so very warm, generous, welcoming and open. People looked me in the eye and said, “Well, HELLO THERE!” on the street, in the grocery aisles, at the gas station, and of course at restaurants. There is something so refreshing and comforting about Southern Hospitality and I am so thrilled to have experienced a little sliver of it. If I appeared too alien or unusual, too OTHER to anyone in Clinton, Mississippi, I never knew it. I was welcomed and embraced warmly and lovingly, regardless.

ahhh is THAT what human interaction looks like?

An Other Application

Of course, I got to musing, because that’s what I do, and reflected on how I’m jostled by kindness, etiquette and “common courtesy”. Why is it surprising for people to be kind anymore? Why does eye contact or a friendly passing greeting feel like such a novelty?? I suppose in this time where we spend the majority of our days deciphering words on a computer screen or texts on a phone, its not terribly surprising that the messages conveyed through eye contact and tone of voice are no longer considered integral or necessary in “communication”. Which is a shame. Those nonverbal factors including pitch and intonation of voice, eye contact contain powerful messages. Clues to a person’s intentions, beliefs and identity.

One topic in the newly conceived “What The Fangirl Learned” feature for this blog, pertained to the rise of Cyber Bullying and Online Confidence. It is notable that people present themselves assertively and cruelly as long as they maintain anonymity behind an avatar image and moniker. Would these same people be as blunt and hurtful if they shared their opinions directly with their target? Would Kristen Stewart’s Bull Shit People and Critics ever share their low regard for her if they were in the same room with her, directly to her? I must take a moment to tip my fedora to the brave and brilliant warriors at @BecauseWeAreNot for wading into the mucky secretions from the Nonsensicals and BullShitPeople… and simply holding up a mirror. Yes, Haterade Drinkers, you are that vile and we SEE YOU. My hope is that all of us still experience an instant or two of remembering the human being on the other side of the camera lens, the computer screen or discussion board. It would certainly benefit our Reigning Royal Rebels for us to remember this. . .

She Shines On

Speaking of Royal Rebels and public appearances…. When we last met here in Headquarters Other, we celebrated our Reigning Other Queen’s Best Actress award from the Milan International Film Festival for her stunning work in the powerful film Welcome To The Rileys. We hadn’t seen our lovely Queen for some time, as she was implementing her usual NinjaRebellion and flitting all over the world undetected, un-stalked. YAY. She would continue to fly under the radar until June 5, the day the MTV Movie Awards occurred. And looking at Ms Rebel Royal herself was like seeing the sun for the first time after a decade-long rainstorm. Hole-eeeeee freakin hell.

Where were you all when this stunning fashion DreamTeam of Kristen and Balmain debuted? Kristen wore a scarlet red (YESSSSSS. Red is my favorite color on Ms Stewart) strapless mini dress covered in shimmery grommets and SAFETY PINS, MOFOS!!  The dress, in my opinion boasted one of her–if not THE best–red carpet looks of all time.

Kristen was positively glowing. Blindingly luminous. She emanated pure joy and lightness, and she was giddy and playful for the duration of the whole night. I loved how happy and grounded she appeared. I loved her interaction with Rob and Taylor. I loved her dress. LOVED. IT. Loved it all. I get why Rob stared at her the whole night.

dude. we know.

June 5th, the day of the MMAs was an interesting day for me. I was on my tenth day straight into my deployment assignment for Red Cross, and for the first time, was back from work before the sun set. The day before had been the most heartbreaking day that I can recall in my “grown up” life, certainly my entire psychotherapy career, and I was feeling pretty weary. I had stolen away in one of the tiny preschool classrooms in the church that served as my sleeping quarters. I hadn’t seen my husband in 2 weeks (he was out of town at a work conference when I left for Mississippi) and I hadn’t had a decent night’s sleep nor a proper hot shower in…a long time. I needed a huge steaming bowl of The Pretty to soothe the ache. I sought a reminder of all the blessings in my life that came from musing about Rebel Queens and Warrior Poets. So there I was, hunkered down in a tiny toddler-sized chair watching the live feed on my laptop, which was placed on a tiny toddler-sized table, bursting with exultation over little clips such as this:

Can watch this pure joyfulness on loop forevah

It was a night in which GiddyRob (my Fave Rob) was front and center (yes, Rob just dropped an F-Bomb on live TV that the censors didn’t catch in time; yes he just presented an award to Reese Witherspoon as more of a ROAST; yes, he just made out with Taylor Lautner before gently kissing his hand and forehead), and Eclipse swept all categories brightening an otherwise nearly unwatchable show. After countless moments of “WHAT THE FUCKs?” over the course of the 2 hour awards show, our ReigningOther Queen capped off the night when she accepted her Best Female Performance award graciously (gratitude to the fans who voted) and wittily advising Oscar-winner Natalie Portman:

“Sorry, Natalie, The Popcorn is mine!

So she gets it. Though Kristen Stewart has always gotten it. She knows that her Golden Popcorn statuettes from the MTV Movie Awards are not the Academy Awards that her peers are earning. But she also knows that she wouldn’t be in her fortuitous position as an actress if it weren’t for her devoted supporters. Kristen is gracious and grateful for every single person who sees her work as inspiring and enjoyable and she has more than once publicly thanked the Twilight fans for their incomparable passion. Very classy and…royal of her, yes? Just another reason why Ms Stewart resides atop the Royal Court Float.

O_O

 A Way Out Of The Depths

While sitting there, in the Preschool/nursery room at Calvary Baptist Church watching my live feed of the MMAs, I found it almost impossible to reconcile the extreme paradoxes that comprised my reality on June 5.  I had just driven my pimp rental car (a tricked-out 4×4 SUV, the exact opposite of the car I own in real life) through the little that remained of a Joplin neighborhood in order to get to the air conditioned church that housed a hundred of my fellow Red Cross workers and I. The day before was my brother’s birthday, and when I called the house to wish him birthday happiness, I nearly fainted with exhaustion and grief, and was barely coherent. My mind simply could not wrap around the idea that the scenes I’d encountered earlier my day existed at the same time that the other folks in the world were moving through daily tasks, pushing through another work day, or planning the evening’s dinner, studying for tomorrow’s early-morning exam. That while a four-year-old  girl asked her mother if “The Tornado will come again and take me from you?” in Joplin or Alabama, at the same time, lighting technicians and camera crews were setting up for the red carpet arrivals for another MTV Movie Awards.  I could NOT reconcile these vastly different happenings in my head. It’s taken me over 2 weeks since my return to even begin understanding.

thank you, my Possum @Justice_Aussie for this

A summary for those who hadn’t read about it or seen the news: On Sunday, May 23, 2011 at 5:41PM a tornado with 200 miles/hr (approx 312 kilometers/hr) winds touched down on the city of Joplin, Missouri. Over the course of 19 minutes, the loud, violent funnel cloud measuring one mile wide ripped a 12 mile path through the city (population 50,000). The level of damage, destruction and fatalities left behind in its wake earned the tornado an F5 category rating, the highest on the scale. As of June 14, the death toll was at 153 people with approximately ten people still unaccounted for. The Joplin Tornado destroyed 75% of the city and is now ranked the deadliest singular tornado in decades, and among the ten most deadly tornados in U.S. History. Joplin’s tornado came on the heels of a series of destructive storms and tornados that effected at least five other states across the South and Midwestern U.S. including Mississippi  (the first stop on my deployment) and Alabama where an estimated 195 people died after several tornados touched down. People will tell you that pictures on TV or on the computer will not appropriately depict the destruction. TRUTH. It looked like the Apocalypse had occurred. It looked like a wasteland. It looked the way I imagine it sounded. Absolute obliteration and desolation.

I arrived in Joplin, MO, directly from Clinton, MS, on May 30, on the one-week anniversary of the tornado’s touchdown. People have  different coping mechanisms and timelines in dealing with grief and loss. So by the time I arrived in Joplin, I felt the stirrings of recognition. The numbness and shock was wearing off, and people were slowly growing aware of their feelings about what they just lived through.

Within minutes of arriving in this pummeled and stunned town, I encountered  the electric thrumming of passion, strength and ferocity. And there is promise.

Gratitude. 

Faith.

Resilience.

"I will rebuild", he says.

Beautiful People Do Not ‘Just Happen’

I will delve more personally into the phenomenal stories of the people I met and counseled in my time in Joplin in the second part of this post. Part of the reason for the delay in publishing this essay was my struggle in telling the stories of the Royal Rebels I met in a sensitive, respectful, confidential manner. Another reason for the late posting is my own body’s delayed reaction to my assignment. On day 12, I awoke with a sore throat and sniffly nose, unsurprisingly. By the time I flew home a couple days later, a doctor’s visit had provided me a diagnosis of a “very bad cold-flu”. Additionally, my heart was bursting with stories of loss and sacrifice and dazzling acts of LOVE. Not even I, Miss Ramblelicious, could piece together a coherent sentence. I needed my own brand of therapy to soothe my wounds. Which is where you gorgeous, pulchritudinous, glimmering Rabble Rousers came in. You provided an antidote.

Thank you. THANK. YOU. THANK YOU.

I burst into tears when I was sent the link to the love letter and Birthday Celebration you all participated in, at the generous and gorgeous prompting of my girls CC, Buff and Bouffant. Already I was shocked at the kind words my Team Other Captains bestowed, though I pay them a lot of money (currency is made up of poking, prodding, annoying texts and rambling emails) to say nice things to me and about me, but I am beyond astonished at the loving words and generous wishes you all shared as well. CC was not kidding when she told you all how hard I love those of you on this journey. I do. I love you like a full-body board check in a hockey game. I go big or go home in my gratitude and adoration for you Readers, Sisters and Friends. In addition to check ins with Bouffant and CC, and occasional tweet-exchanges…lines of poetry  and words of encouragement began to filter in while I was away from you…Reminders of #BEAUTY and #RebelRoyalty and #OTHERNESS. . .

From my girl J (@That_Bitch86) who also provided me an anchor long before. #QUEEN

From Katie (@Kate_Suena) who shows me #Other and #beauty in book recs

You could not possibly know how you healed me on June 3, when you chimed in to wish a Happy Birthday/Anniversary to my little blog about Beauty. You did and do. YOU. HEAL. ME. As do sights such as this:

Giggly, LondonStew will ALWAYS Win.

annnnnnnd….ohhhhh mah Good Goddess…just a day or so after the MMAs…Are you KIDDING ME???!?

Well, so. There really isn’t much to say to follow up that, other than that time away for NinjaStew only further proves to be GLORIOUS….So it’s a perfect place to pause until I post Part Two later this week, hopefully Thursday, to get back on Regular MOO Programming. I know I’ve droned on about my gratitude to you all, but you cannot possibly know how much you have provided joy, comfort and cure for me while I crawled through this month’s Other-worldly events. Thank you for your patience as I re-acclimate and try to find my grounding again…Thank you  for tolerating me while I fangirl a month late over the beautiful sightings of our Reigning Other Queen. Thank you for reminding me that no matter where I travel, who I meet, how deep the struggle is to see it…that OTHER. IS. EVERYWHERE. 

We are Other.

Kristen is Other.

Others’ light shines on, shines far.

Embrace your Other.

*       *      *

A/N: Later this week, Part 2 will introduce you all to the pristinely beautiful Rebel Royalty I met while abroad…And we’ll talk more about Kristen’s GlamourUK appearance, because it’s too beautiful not to. And…There’s another MUSINGS GIVEAWAY!!! Until then, be well, be kind to one another.  See you soon. Yours, KJ 

I have numerous people to thank individually, but I’ll wait til the second part of the essay before doing so. Just know that every single person reading this: I felt you. I know you’re there. And I am indebted to you.

PLAYLIST: (PUSH PLAY) 

Look For Me As You Go By ~ The Innocence Mission

Satisfied Mind ~ Jeff Buckley

Price Tag ~ Jessie J feat B.O.B.

I Feel Pretty/ Unpretty ~ Lea Michele & Dianna Agron of GLEE

After The Storm ~ Mumford & Sons

All That She Is

19 May
A/N: Images seen here are not owned nor created by (c)MusingsOnOther. Today’s essay is unbeta’d per usual. Forgive me any mistakes or imperfections you may find. But that is how I roll. This post is a long one. Make yourselves comfortable.

“You’ll never get away from the sound of the woman that loves you”

~Stevie Nicks, Silver Springs

I hope this new MOO finds everyone well. Did all you incredible Mothers, Parents, Aunties, Mentors, Providers, Caretakers and Grandmamas have a lovely Mother’s Day? My hope is that you did. I was able to pull off an impromptu visit down south with my own Mother, spending treasured time with my immediate family in the same city, which is a first for us, in a very long time.

In Royal Rebel news, it has been a pretty quiet, sighting-less week of our Stealthy pair, our NinjaQueen and her Royal consort. And it makes me happy. Between his punishing world promo-tour for Water For Elephants, the six months of international gallivanting for Breaking Dawn filming, plus recent birthdays for both of them, any quiet, unduh-covah time they can grab right now is probably sweet, sweet salvation. And it probably isn’t long enough, this break. Rob returns to work, starting the gritty, raw film Cosmopolis at the helm of esteemed (and frankly, in my opinion, really cool) director David Cronenberg (History of Violence, Eastern Promises) on May 23rd in Toronto, Canada (where he and Kristen have been spotted walking the infamous puppy dog Bear on more than one occasion).

I’m ridiculously eager to watch this project unfold, if anything for its stark difference in roles for Rob. Hello, apathetic billionaire-business man seeking connection through increasingly self-destructive ways….How fun does that sound??

Ok, how ’bout now?

My name is Eric Packer. I need a haircut. And financial advice.

We’ll talk more about this film as it progresses, okay?. . .The little “break” time that Kristen may be enjoying now isn’t all that much longer for her either. She is scheduled to begin her work on the small film K-11 soon, as well as preparation work for Snow White and The Huntsman. We received the great news that the titular role of The Huntsman was finally cast (well hello there, Thor) last week, but also the nice surprise that the film will be released six months sooner than originally projected. Filming begins in August, and the premiere is scheduled for June 1, 2012. A summertime kickoff by our Reigning Other Queen! So while our Royal Rebels are under the radar, hopefully grounding and recuperating in privacy, we are not lacking reasons to celebrate their growth and successes and remember why we began admiring and supporting them as artists in the first place.

Oh, for Pete's sake, that's just ridonk pretteh.

 What the Fangirl Learned

“Did she make you cry, make you break down, shatter your illusions of love?” ~Stevie Nicks, Gold Dust Woman

For today’s topic, as the first discussion in this new feature, I had planned on discussing a woman’s incredible capacity to love wholly but also to acknowledge her capacity for destruction (sometimes intentionally, sometimes not) in her passionate wrath. I was going to explore some of the themes I saw in our own community, in our fandom, because I’ve met the most incredible women, brilliant women, as a result of being a Kristen and Robert supporter. Conversely, I’ve observed in public venues no less, the most shocking behaviors emerge from my fellow sisters.  *This was the last section (the Fangirl Learned) I needed to complete today (I write MOO in all kinds randomness…the Muse visits when she is damn well ready, y’know?). But since receiving a phone call that I’m detailing down below, I may re-work how to address this topic…

The (M)Other Within

*ANNOUNCEMENT*  

Remember when I told you lovelies that while I have no money, I do have time and skills to contribute in these dire hours? I literally received the phone call right now as I’m finishing up today’s post. I have been cleared for and accepted onto the Red Cross Disaster Response Team as a therapist. I’m deploying out to the Tornado/Flood Zones back east (Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina-esque areas) next week to administer frontline counseling and emotional support to the tornado and flood victims. Its looking like  it will be Tues or Wednesday when I fly out. I will be gone for at least 10 to 12 days and could potentially remain out in the field for up to three weeks per cycle. *side note*  Even if I leave on Tuesday morning, I’ll still have been able to see SAM BRADLEY perform the night before. PHEW! A girl still has a couple of #priorities.

The American Red Cross

So while I’m away for potentially the next 2 to 3 weeks, I’ve asked my fellow Team Other Captains (CC, Buff and a behind-the-scenes technician Bouffant) if they wouldn’t mind keeping an eye on MOO and perhaps contribute some of their brilliance to continue the support of Otherness in my stead. The wonderful gals that they are, of course, all stepped up immediately and exuberantly. So I’m going to thank you amazing Readers in advance for welcoming them warmly and wonderfully as you have in the past when they’ve contributed. And besides, CC and Buff already have their own mass followings (because they’re geniuses and I kinda hope to be a little smarter just by associating with them). My friend Starlust may contribute a written piece as well. She has been my  good friend since the very beginning and I trust her with heart and soul. You will too when you meet her.

This leads me to discuss what I had hoped to, even before learning that I was going to deploy. Look back to one of the earliest Musings ever. I wrote an essay called Aphrodite and Kristen Go Against Code  <—–click it to check it, yo. I responded to the Entertainment Weekly preview of the roundtable interview that Kristen, Rob and Taylor did in promotion for Eclipse.  Remember this hotness??

The Musings  written in response was almost one year ago, on June 24, 2010. What did I see at the bottom of the brief EW preview back in June 2010? Within moments of going viral, the preview had already garnered nearly one hundred commenters’ reactions to the excerpt and these comments were quite criticalNo, worse. The majority of comments were cruel and hatefulI won’t go into specifics because I don’t have the energy nor do I want to taint this supportive Kristen and Rob site with anything remotely negative. But I will share my observations. The majority of commenters both critical and supportive, presented themselves with female monikers. And the harshest, most cruel of the comments were from women. Women who reported they were mothers, professionals.  Also, I noticed that most comments were disproportionately supportive and defensive of Rob, but were incensed and enraged towards Kristen. She was torn down for anything from her physical appearance to the way she phrased her responses. In those commenter’s eyes, those predominantly female commenter’s views, she could do nothing right. The need to tear others down to feel imposing and powerful and bigger has perhaps been an evolutionary trait, leftover from our earliest days on earth–survival of the fittest…but the way that women attack is especially fascinating and …disturbing. 

Today, in 2011, when I watch my Twittah timeline and scan the PMs filled with updates from around the fandom, I notice that the anger and resentment towards our Reigning Queen has become more specific and therefore illuminating about the folks who spew the Haterade. After witnessing success after success for Kristen as a professional and as a woman, her Critics–the Bullshit People as she dubbed them last year in an interview–grapple with any new angle from which they can attack.

Their options are becoming pretty limited.

Criticizing her relationship with Robert as publicity-driven holds little weight since Kristen’s professional and critical success has only increased in the past year, what with the ovations from film critics and audiences flooding in for her work in stellar performances in The Runaways and Welcome to the Rileys (Example: MIFF Award–to be addressed in a bit).  Plus there’s Robert’s direct statements in interviews that his relationship with Kristen is in no way calculated or “nefarious”. So the anti-Kristeners focus on…her abilities to walk young Bear…??

This gangly, awkward, beautiful creature caused major damage to the Bullshit People's campaign. Powerful little guy.

 And instead of calling Ms Stewart some of the degrading and hateful names they’ve given her over time, many Nonsensicals simply refer to her as “That Girl”, which in the scheme of things isn’t the most horrendous, not compared to what they’ve called her before. Also we have identified some of the boldest of the BullShit People in the past year. Kristen and Robert have names and information about the particularly heinous of the Unhappy Ones. When attackers are no longer faceless, offensive plans can be created. Kristen and Rob’s incredibly good-looking effective security teams have been quite active and occupied this year.

Another shift I’ve noticed over the year, is a growing, greater compassion emerging in this fandom. Perhaps it’s because we have been in the trenches together now for several years. We have created friendships and support networks and camaraderie. We have faces and voices to names…This again, is in that universal movement to remove the masks we wear, and efforts made to consciously embrace our Otherness. We’re finding we have so many more commonalities than differences.

Last year, my Welsh Muse Kathryn wrote me a poignant letter detailing her journey embracing her Otherness and it was in embracing her abilities to be a new M0ther. It was in her exploration of what motherhood meant for her that she realized she was truly embracing her authentic self, quirks and oddities and all, that she already had the propensity to accept herself in all that she is. She was similar to me, in that she hadn’t planned necessarily on having children, opting instead to focus on pursuit of bliss and career and expression. And yet now she’s all of those things: beautiful, kind, compassionate, artistic, and a Mother. (I miss you, K).

When we sit down and examine all the ways someone can be “motherly”, we conjure up feelings and associations with universal, human qualities such as:

LOVINGNESS…DEVOTION….PROTECTIVENESS…CREATIVITY….COMPASSION…SELFLESSNESS…KINDNESS

When I survey the descriptors above,  I don’t feel as defensive of  my near-certain decision to not have children. Believe me, society and peers are pretty critical (i.e. harsh and judgmental) about people who decide to not have children too. One of the most incredible things a couple of my Cyber Sisters Nail and Mari have said to me in the past few months involved the employment of my favorite strategy: REFRAMING. They said,

“You are mothering and providing, even if you’re not technically a child-bearer. You give nurturing and compassion and protectiveness to your clients, to your friends…and to MOO Readers.”

See? We all gotta do a little reframing sometime. And I can see this next step on my path in my work for Red Cross is an extension of that concept. I do carry a wish that as we each evolve and thrive and stumble and then pick ourselves back up again that we are finding, that there is less of a need to deconstruct or tear Others down coasting on fear or ignorance. Because we’ve gotten to know each other a little more. Our (M)Otherness has kicked in, perhaps?

Anyway, in light of the somewhat unexpected events occurring in this moment, I won’t delve further today into the reasons why, psychologically or emotionally, women behaved in appallingly harsh ways over the past year. But I certainly can appreciate some of the improvements and changes that have occurred …and I can pin some hope that the changes have made due to steps closer to embracing Others’ Otherness.

And lets take some time to get to know and then celebrate these incredibly brave Unconventional Beauties, shall we?

 Featured Royal Rebel: Stevie Nicks

Stephanie “Stevie” Lynn Nicks, called everything from eccentric, legendary, a gypsy, a witch, a sorceress, and a poet, since her debut in the music industry forty years ago, is the epitome of Other to me. I have my own fascination and adoration of her, have since the early 1990’s when I accidentally stumbled upon a music video on VH1 called “Gypsy” and then later heard songs from the Fleetwood Mac live reunion tour “The Dance”. I didn’t know it then, but with a few bars of the haunting song “Silver Springs” soaring from my car radio’s speakers, I had encountered music’s Other Royalty.

A little background: Stevie’s grandfather Aaron was an aspiring country singer, and from the moment Stevie could speak, she was singing country ditties and picking out melodies on a guitar which was handcrafted for her by said proud granddad. Stevie credits her grandfather for teaching her to love music and for inciting her passion for songwriting and musical crafting. It was at a northern California high school that she met a singing-songwriting-guitar-playing boy named Lindsey Buckingham. Stevie and Lindsey immediately forged a strong bond which would ultimately prove to be an outrageously productive musical and intimate partnership. Stevie tells The Guardian (UK) that she believed joining the band Fleetwood Mac in 1975 was predestined, but that upon reflection, she ventures that Lindsey Buckingham feels the opposite.

You have NO idea how loud I screamed when I snagged this vinyl off Ebay years ago. Yeah, and they're nekkid.

At the start of the year 1975, Stevie and Lindsey (apart of the rock band Fritz) had already been cultivating a small, devoted following in San Francisco, CA. Their time with Fritz granted them once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to observe and learn from rock legends Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix, both for whom Fritz performed opening sets. When Fritz disbanded, Stevie and Lindsey became the duo “Buckingham Nicks” and recorded their one and only debut album by day, and worked as servers, house cleaners and carpenters by night. The album did not meet commercial success, and the duo was dropped from their record label. Meanwhile, British blues band Fleetwood Mac had just parted ways with yet another guitar player and as the now-legendary story entails, Mick Fleetwood, the group’s co-founder and drummer approached Lindsey and invited him into the band. However, in a serendipitous exchange, Lindsey refused to join without Stevie, saying, “We’re a packaged deal”. So the California hippie kids joined the British Blues Crew.

And so it began. Fleetwood Mac 1975

Ok, novels and ever-expanding Wikipedia entries can barely cover the expanse of this Majestic Gypsy’s forty years in the music industry, and I will not attempt to reiterate the glorious peaks and valleys of Ms Nicks’s life here today (but sit down with me in person and I’ll happily chatter on with you about my adoration for her). But I can try to highlight a few reasons why she, for me, is a true Rebel Queen.

Of course we cannot overlook Stevie’s distinctive, raspy-growly voice, her whimsical, journal-entry intimate lyrics, and her propensity for flowing, ethereal dresses. And it’s quite a testament to her artistic influence when she can count among her legions of fans some musical greats such as Billy Corgan, Tom Petty, Sheryl Crow, Courtney Love, Adam Levine, and Taylor Swift to name a few.

In days long preceding concepts like Stalkerazzi, Twitter and Celebrity Rehab, Stevie Nicks navigated the pitfalls and customary practices of a Rock-and-Roll lifestyle in an extremely human, relatable manner. There were the drugs–she had a ten-year cocaine dependency stemming from early days with Fleetwood Mac, and then in the late eighties through early nineties developed a harrowing addiction to prescription medications, namely Klonipin which she weaned from after a painful near-fifty day course of rehab. There were personal tragedies, including the death of childhood best friend Robin Snyder who succumbed to leukemia two days after giving birth to Stevie’s Godson Matthew; and there were the emotional and physical illnesses such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, depression, anxiety and weight fluctuation (which was relentlessly criticized by critics and “fans”). And then there was the love. Always the love.

“In ’75, ’76, we were beautiful, fast,  sexy, love was everywhere and we were moving from person to person. That’s it. Love was around every corner”

Of course there was/is her musical and personal soul mate Lindsey Buckingham, with whom she shares an “Edward and Bella-like” love, but there were many other lovers and inspirations famous and not-so-much (including her Fleetwood Mac band mate Mick Fleetwood, Eagles rockers Joe Walsh and Don Henley; music industry legend and current American Idol mentor Jimmy Iovine). Her relationships with these men informed and influenced her songwriting and musical creations engendering some of rock and pop music’s most famous songs…ever. We’re talking songs that have permeated our collective consciousness. For instance: Landslide has been remade or covered by everyone from The Smashing Pumpkins, Tori Amos, and The Dixie Chicks, to, recently, Gwyneth Paltrow on an episode of Glee). Last week alone was a Nicksapalooza with Glee dedicating an entire episode to Fleetwood Mac’s seminal and legendary album Rumours (which detailed the band’s scandalous divorces, break-ups and affairs with each other and as a group).  Also, my new favorite TV show The Voice featured competitors singing Stevie’s song Leather and Lace and in conclusion Maroon 5’s frontman and Voice Coach Adam Levine reverently declared, “Stevie Nicks is The Greatest.”

At 62 years old, the woman is showing no signs of stopping. In fact, she just released her newest solo album, her first in a decade to the highest reviews of her career. She admits to an obsession with The Twilight series and even wrote a couple of songs on this new album inspired by Our Reigning Queen Kristen’s portrayal of a broken Bella Swan in New Moon. Ok, seriously. How do you not LOVE that???

Stevie Nicks has your back, Bella!

Ms Nicks is about to embark on a tour to support the new album titled In Your Dreams, but also a world tour with Fleetwood Mac in 2012. Perhaps my admiration for Stevie Nicks stems from her grace in managing conflict and life while in the public eye. Perhaps it’s because Stevie struggles with body image, insecurities, relationship concerns, and anxiety, channeling angst into catharsis byway of songwriting and musical performance. Maybe it’s because the tambourine-shaking, leg-warmer-wearing, spinning, whirling songstress never compromises her beliefs or ambitions when all of society pressured her to.

Stevie’s new album sounds more like vintage Stevie than ever, recalling early Fleetwood Mac rocker sentiments while also preserving her poetic whimsy. Admirably, she rebuffed traditional gender-specific expectations when she was younger (she was a lady of rock in an arena of men) and later regarding marriage and motherhood in order to pursue “freedom in following [her] art.” I can relate on such a basic, visceral level to this decision, as I’ve shared with you all earlier today. Because Stevie twirls through very personal and genuine tribulations gracefully while wearing 4-inch platform-boots and diaphanous dresses that Couture designers have tried to emulate since 1975, she forever is a stunning Queen of Other.

Offenses of Otherness:

*Emphatically celebrates her feminine divinities: love and beauty

*Invites an intimate and realistic connection to her personal heartbreak and struggle

*Opted out of the gender role expectations of marriage and motherhood

Reigning Other Queen: Kristen Stewart

While we may not have seen Ms Rebel Queen herself in a while, we have been gifted with a few wonderful events that are pretty spectacular all the same. From the interview that keeps on giving, i.e. Uk Elle, we have some more “outtakes“…And good gracious, I do not envy the photo director who had to make the final cuts on these beauties…

The prestigious Cannes Film Festival is wrapping up this week and while this landmark annual event is designed as a showcase for new and developing films, it is a coveted  forum for filmmakers to exhibit and sell projects based on their artistic quality to distributors from all over the world. This year, a six minute trailer from one small but mighty film was shown to a Cannes audience of potential buyers.

According to attendees, after watching the diminutive six-minute trailer, buyers rose to their feet, passionately clapping. With the warm reception of the highly anticipated Francis Ford Coppola-produced project, On The Road has emerged as prevalent and desired today. Now. This adaptation from the book about restless souls seeking the elusive “It” to soothe post-war disillusionment has been anticipated for something like 30 years. Director Walter Salles and his outrageously gifted cast wrapped filming in the fall last year, and the news of positive reactions to the short film teaser gives us one more reason to hope that we will be seeing Sal, Dean, and Marylou on screen very soon. I cannot tell you how excited I am for this movie. If I did, it would sound something like this: $#!(*$*@#@&!@#!)&%//!!

nope. Not even close to getting old.

Hmmm, what else? Our Reigning Other Queen has had quite the week, as we’ve said. Even though we haven’t laid eyes on her since we saw her in New York, we have had plenty o’ reasons to rejoice. At another International Film Festival, Milan this time, another one of Kristen’s films, or more specifically, Kristen herself was the toast of the town. On May 11, we learned the news that Ms. Kristen Jaymes Stewart received the coveted honor of being named Best Actress at the Milan International Film Festival (MIFF) for her portrayal of the electric, vibrant, almost “feral” but vulnerable teenage stripper, Mallory in the effecting Welcome to the Rileys.

Congratulations, Kristen!! 

ICU dedicated actress with the bruised up legs and arms

One might observe that being called “THAT GIRL” as almost complimentary…? That Girl has been named Elle’s Woman of the Year…That Girl has a Young Hollywood Award, several MTV Movie Awards and a BAFTA. This same lady has the respect and love of legendary colleagues and filmakers. Ms. Stewart may very well be one girl who doesn’t really need introduction. She doesn’t need a label to garner praise and respect and prestigious awards. She does after all, make a living dressing up and portraying everybody else other than Kristen Stewart. But it’s still wonderful to watch as the authentic, grounded, intelligent, witty, kind, dedicated, compassionate, articulate and talented woman named  Kristen Jaymes Stewart continues to follow her genuine path, and embrace her royalty and Otherness.

Offenses of Otherness:

* Celebrates her feminine divinities: compassion and protectiveness.

*Unapologetic about displaying confidence, assertiveness and independence.

*Spurns the idea of downplaying her intelligence or genuine emotional response.

*  *  *

Stevie accepts all that she is. And is Other.

Kristen accepts all that she is. And is Other.

Others accept themselves and all that they are.

Embrace your Other. 

*  *  *

Notes: 

Wellllll. This one was long and it was all over the place, I realize. There were a lot of Royal Rebel events that occurred, on the sly, as well as over the course of the WFE promo tour….And in tying it up here, I struggled to organize and address all the goodies as well as the Otherness stuff.

Thanks for hanging with me, everyone. It’s been a crazy few weeks and now it’s gone outer limits with this new Adventure I’m heading on in a matter of days.

I don’t know exactly where I am going to be stationed on this assignment. I don’t know exactly how long I’ll be there. I don’t know where I’m sleeping. I don’t know if there’s a consistent stream of electricity and I doubt there will be steady internet connection. I don’t have a good set of work boots since I gave my Doc Martens away last year. But I will communicate as often as I can with my girls on Team Other, and maybe through Twitter if I can get a signal. I’m  @MusingsOnOther . . .

I DO know that this has always been my life’s hope–to combine humanitarian work in the fields. Its why I became a therapist in the first place. I am ecstatic and nervous and proud and scared all at once. I totally told @DeeDreamer16, @Kate_Suena, @KStewsbtrthanU and my CyberSisters today that I “want to vom right. NAO.”

Oh. And I also know that I kinda love you all. Madly.

The pristinely talented and lovely author @PrimaryColors1 (Firefly in Summer) is already out there on site in Alabama donating, transporting supplies, giving water to workers and folks in shelters on a daily basis. Consider donating time or money to assist the victims of the Tornados and Floods. Every little bit helps, especially to folks who have lost everything.

Talk to you laters, Lovelies. Until then, be well and be kind to one another. We’re really all Other together.  Yours, xo, KJ 

More:

This Essay’s Playlist

Trampled Rose ~Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

I Shall Believe ~Sheryl Crow

Starlight ~Muse

Gold Dust Woman ~Stevie Nicks

Winter Winds ~ Mumford & Sons

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