!EXTRA EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT: Girl convinced that if she keeps furnishing this collage on her bedroom mirror it will one day catch flame and once the ashes have drifted to the floor will reveal a complete and content, real human girl. This delusion of hers is a terrible film with an unsound narrative structure and lousy transatlantic accents that they’d watch on mystery science theatre 3000.
Well yes you caught me and the girl is me. Cutting hearts from coffee stained construction paper, incorrectly citing old poems I once read on sticky notes, printing old skate company ads, and 90s sitcom screencaps, and Martha Swope archive photos, and obsessively pasting them just where my eyes land if I look ahead from my desk chair.
Sometimes when I spend a lot of time or thought or money or passion on one interest of mine, I feel the others preparing their torches and pitchforks. I feel that I’m a fraud, taking all credibility out of my past successes, pursuits, and dreams; the ones that I had just an hour before and will revisit tomorrow and still actively harbor even when they’re not currently at work. I am an impostor imitating myself. A skeevy door to door salesman in the 1920s, stealing gold jewelry from your pocket and then selling it back to you, knowing you’ll bite because it’s just your taste.
My collage is the same, so every new addition comes with an equal opposite cut and paste. I pair the new Rick Howard nose blunt cutout with a photograph of barbra streisand just diagonal and the new old beastie boys promo poster I printed with a flip phone photograph of britney spears. Every picture of Bill Murray has Lindsay Lohan just beneath it and with any member of Jackass there is a nearby ballerina.
I wish I could call it something delicate and forgiving like balance but what it really is, is War. I’m hoping one day I’ll be able to stop forcing myself to be a clear and digestible cartoon character and just become a real human girl.