Jun 152015

I recently found myself in a relatively unusual situation, in which, in my alter ego’s (N’) existence, I was in the presence of not one but two beautiful, interesting, intelligent women. The three of us struck up a bond, and did not a little socializing. One of them, in particular – call her Adriana – […]

Nov 192014

In “Shame,” Michael Fassbender powerfully depicts the soulless misery of a driven existence. The other day, I saw a man deep in the throes of this. He stood, leaning against a “down” stairway, his eyes furtively glancing up the stairs to see who would be coming down, what they would be wearing. Women in skirts […]

Nov 022014

As I descended the stairs into the subway – a particular stairway at a particular station – I was overcome with a powerful memory. It was a memory like a smell memory – overwhelming, totalizing, transporting. To a lifetime ago. I remembered the dissociation, the shame, the emptiness, of what I used to do before […]

Jun 102014

I feel it. Sometimes more, sometimes less. It’s a bodily sensation, located high up in my chest, almost in my throat. It’s a tightness, a constriction. My solar plexus clenches. My shoulders seem to hunch forward. My neck compresses, my head strains not to be downward-facing. It has a temperature – hot. But it’s not […]

Nov 252013

1. Cross your legs. That’s not very ladylike. Your cunt is shameful. Your sex is shameful. You are inherently shameful. I am shameful. Women are shameful. We women all are shameful. 2. Don’t want what you want. What you want is shameful. You are wrong, different, broken. I am shameful. I am alone in my […]

Sep 252013
Finishing "Shame"

I wrote about the encounter between Brandon and the young woman played so powerfully by Lucy Walters that opens “Shame.” I had forgotten the final scene of the movie, a reprise of the first scene. And, in reading a couple of interviews with Walters, I realized I got one detail wrong: she didn’t just have […]

Sep 232013
Watching “Shame” again – pleasure and joy

When it came out, I saw “Shame” in the theater. I wrote about it, somewhat incoherently (in retrospect). I’m watching it again, now, at home. Last night, I watched the first half of it. It yanked my heart out. Michael Fassbender’s performance as Brandon is brilliant, heart-rending. And it captures so much of what I […]

Sep 092013

The other day, I wrote about some of my self-destructive impulses, about how, when lonely, I sometimes act (and often feel compelled to act) in ways that simultaneously exacerbate the sense of loneliness and make me feel responsible for that loneliness, by making me feel ashamed of myself. I wrote, almost as a throwaway at […]