Monday, September 19, 2016


I'm working on my first draft of "Momish" the novel. It's a mess, but it's funny. I'm a mess and I'm funny too. Will post an -- well if I said "blurb" or "excerpt" I'd write that here but I don't use those words. So I will post a little bit of the book here when I feel you've deserved it. Also I'm forgetting how to spell and I forgot my daughter at school two times already this year. Is it the Diet Pepsi? How can I give up the Diet Pepsi?

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Cease and de-Cyst

So I have a giant ball I'm growing, I guess in my spare time. For like the last 20 years. So now I can hardly sit down, so it's time to become less of a man and have it taken off. My body is SO nice to grow these extra things for me. I only decide to do this because I can no longer sit in a saddle without feeling like I'm sitting on an egg made of stone that hurts. Yesterday was definitely the last time I can climb up there. So it's time. I hope the doctor is good, she looked 12 and had the personality of a radish. But I guess I don't need to be wowed by her wit when she's hunkered down between my legs. She'll be only one of a handful of women who have been there, and the only one with a knife and some helpers. At least my horse will have more time to spend with the sheep now that I'm on sick leave. I just hope balls well that ends well. ps. disclaimer it is not an actual ball.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Here Endeth the Dream

So first day kids are back at school and I'm keeping a list of all the things I do during the day. I'm going to do it for a week and see just what this Juliet Johnson person is all about. So far the list is huge and exhausting, and I have to go run pick up a person at school right now, or so my list informs me. The greatest part is that I got offered a job possibility by a certain doctor relative. I could become a medical coder, which is code for all my dreams end here. No but really it would make money, and I'd get to take a class and learn all about not great writers, or great art, or great thinkers. But how to do billing for a rather, well, extraordinary doctor that I love. Anyway, these things happen. We'll see.

Monday, August 15, 2016

I Think I Can

I don't blog on this blog that much because I don't know for sure what Juliet Johnson is these days. I am a fractured person after having kids, and becoming four people instead of just the one insane one that I already knew about and could basically understand. I think a career is looming ahead, or maybe just a string of strange jobs, but I've already been doing that. Editing my Momish novel, getting kids safely to the next grade in school, making a bunch of sandwiches, keeping the house running, taking care of hundred year old man, and sitting outside with chickens. All important things. Then should I be adding grad school, to make better money. I'm feeling like planning time is coming, like when you know you have to make all the Thanksgiving food, and you're just gathering the ingredients in your head. And you can feel that big, heavy, warm meal ahead, all woven into the family. And I'm so bad at cooking really, but I can do that one meal. I can do it one more time, and it will be really good. So I can do this. Just have to figure out just what it is that I'm doing. I can't even imagine doing more things. A dad that I know from preschool saw me on the road the month and rolled down his window and said "I HAVE NEVER BEEN BUSIER IN MY LIFE." This I understand. I wish writing was a way to be rich. Or washing people's hair. I've done a lot of both. I actually got paid for washing people's hair. Maybe I should go back to that. It was a good gig when I was 17. ps. if you think summer is a vacation, and you are a mom, then you are doing it wrong. Summer is even busier than school, it's just you never have to actually get dressed.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016


So here's the thing about being a mom and also a human being and about to turn 50. I started counting how many people I had been with. I spend more time thinking about the things I've done. I play farm every day, brushing the sheep and trying to keep the effing squirrels from eating my eggs and beheading my chicks. (they eat the heads, wtf? go get some nuts like a regular squirrel!) Then there's Europe and my kids want to go, they want to go on a plane anywhere, they want to see things. The money thing is terrible. The house is good. There's a pool. There's enough space. The kids are all huge and sprawling, like Dolly Parton's boobs. There's land mass there. They want to do things. I want moments of quiet, because I am still a writer. I need to take things in and figure out where they go, and feel the things. I'm doing allright, because I have a black dog right here with her head on my lap and a fan blowing and all the children still asleep. But I'm missing people. I'm missing the Dresden room, and the scripts that never got made. It's not the money, it's the stories. I want to tell these stories. They're funny, and they mean something. It's so confusing, all the things coming at us. Life frail, people impossible. Food shopping constantly. Old husband. What am I going to do with that? I can handle the care, how does it all not make you numb? And I am a pretty terrible wife. I just don't enjoy the having to be seen all the time. That is difficult. I was better, as everyone is, at faking all that for short periods of time and escaping unscathed. And then I worry that I'm only here to make the other person's life good, forget about my life. But wait, isn't this my life? On the good side, I do get to ride in the early morning while everyone sleeps. I get to see the dog walk along, and I get to hear and feel the horse and the nature. This is solace. Maybe life is so much balancing, at least for a writer or a feeler. You have to balance the act of life with the hugeness of life underneath. Sort it all out. Find what it's telling you. Try and translate it for others. This feels like what I'm supposed to be doing. Aside from calling old boyfriends and girlfriends and wanting to feel love, and understanding who I am. This ball of wires and flowers with past present and future. The present is so loud. It's so big. Caring for children and ancient grandfather. It is meaningful, and like a deep hidden pool in a watery cave. But no one is really in there with you. You're in there. That's something, I guess. It's crowded with voices around me, and this keeps me full. And living in LA, a land of all voices, all people, I have no shortage of people. But still I can only hear one person at a time. I'm listening, all the time. So this is keeping me full and then overfull and then run away to feel peace and then lonely. And then soda is good, because it means nothing and it's cold, and it's just for me. I think this place I'm in is maybe a great place. It's just scary because it is a place to launch off from - like any place in life. This is your diving board. It's even all stacked with good things. Stop staring at all the good and enjoy being bewildered. This is how it is. Leap. Tell the stories.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

Sub Conscious

Every time I sub I go to Subway for lunch. The first year I subbed I only worked at my local school, too afraid to go to some weird school where I didn't know where the bathroom was. Now I take every call, because every call means money. Also because then I get to eat lunch with a real soda with ice in it. And also something strange is happening. I'm starting to LIKE it. I'm liking the stress of not knowing ANYONE, and not having ANY idea what's going on in the class, or knowing ANY of the kids. They hand me a key and a folder, I find the classroom, I open it, I am on spy duty suddenly. I have to look around, figure out when computer lab or library time is (that's a total score, because you can play games or read books and not lead in any way), read over the lesson plan the teacher left, try and figure out where the books are (every teacher leaves things their own special version of spaz - and it's my job to figure it out) - try and get a quick idea of the math (my worst nightmare) and then a bell rings and I have to get the kids. I like the kids. Kids are pretty amazing. Third and fourth grade are the best. They can do a lot of the work by themselves and they also like to tell you how the day runs. They know where everything is and they know when you're doing it wrong. But they also like to help. There are always really helpful girls who work hard and are kind of shy. Smart boys are always shy too. There are always at least two loud boys. There is always one boy who does no work. He is just sitting there. If you use a bell on the desk that dings, it saves your voice. If you keep them quiet when you first get there, they will be quiet most of the day. When you take them to p.e. they will always argue about the rules of the games. I used to think I was there to change everything, to make them SEE certain things, because I am important. But I am not there for that. I'm there to keep them learning, and to observe them. The boy who doesn't do anything and the loud boys are not the losers. They are just learning in their own way. And all kids, every kid, wants to be important. They have good little hearts. I'm liking that I get flung into a classroom with 25 kids looking at me and I can do it. I like learning the stuff. I like being excited about the book we're reading out loud and I like calling the kids up to act out ideas. Because school should be fun. I like that it's all over by 2, and the rest of the day is mine. I like that I help pay the rent. And that I don't miss any time with my kids. So I'm amassing my material for my Subculture book. It's a weird world, it's the life of a temp, the mom life of temp. What's good is it uses nurturing mom skills mixed with the strict schedule of the Nazi school environment. Maybe that's harsh. All I know is there's food, I get to wear jeans, and it's still possible to play games if we get all the work done.