Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Year in Review - A Pictorial

this is my first selfie of the year 2015, taken the day we had my son's birthday party, the first weekend of January.  I take rather a lot of selfies since I got a smartphone a couple months ago, but before that, I had to have my camera with me to take a photo, so my photos of myself were more deliberate -- I had a reason for all of them.  I took this one because I was dressed the way I used to dress in my teens and early twenties -- old, slightly broken choker and a moth-eaten sweater -- and it made me nostalgic.  And, of course, it was a good hair-day too.

Early January again, my son and a friend of his playing music at his birthday party.

this is the only photo I took in February. 

March 2015 - my dad flew to California to help me celebrate my birthday.  It was really such a wonderful weekend.  We ate at Musso & Frank, one of my absolute favorite places ever and definitely my favorite place to celebrate.  This is where F. Scott Fitzgerald worked on drinking himself to death (at least according to this one movie I saw about him, called Last Call,) and also where Charlie Chaplin, Marilyn Monroe, Dashell Hammett and so many more of my favorite stars used to drink and dine.  

This is dad and my son at the airport hotel restaurant the night he flew back home.

In April, we went to see a puppet show(above) at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater, an under-appreciated jewel in the crown of the sometimes hateful city of angels.  I got a wonderful interview with one of the puppeteers that May.

This is a play-date my son had in May.  I love this photo because it looks like I'm a capable mom, sloppily pretty, just sort of sitting on the floor, casually happy and observant.  This is the type of candid shot I loved to see of myself when I was a kid looking at pictures of me as a younger kid.

I feel the same way about this photo:

It's of my mom and son posing with Happy Meal masks at the McDonald's in San Pedro.  This is the only time I've eaten in a McDonald's since I  was a kid or something.  There's something sort of Robert Frank in this photo, like "look at the humble beauty of this American family eating cheap burgers in a shitty restaurant with a guy in a baseball cap also candidly enjoying a cheap burger in the background."

Also in February, we went to a butterfly sanctuary at the Natural History Museum:

I took this selfie in front of a statue of a naked woman at the gazebo near the butterfly sanctuary:

 I'm guilty of being a little bored here even though I was at such a beautiful place.

In June I had open heart surgery to replace part of my ascending aorta and repair an  aortic aneurysm.  This is the second surgery I've had like this -- the first one was around 10 years earlier, and differed from this one in that they used a cow valve before, and this time they put in a mechanical valve.  The whole thing went pretty well considering how major an operation it was.  

Here I am in July already getting much healthier.

In August I started to come unhinged.  I can see myself here, trying to enjoy a beautiful moment but feeling sad.

In October, I had a nervous breakdown, in large part due to my own bad decisions but also a little bit because of brain chemistry.  I moved to Florida to get my head together for a while.  I stayed with family on a beautiful little island.  I walked along the water everyday, collecting seashells and taking a lot of photos of pretty things I saw.

and some selfies of feeling peaceful.

And objects I arranged, the way I used to when I'd be playing alone with dolls when I was a kid:

While in Florida, I went to the Ringling Museum, with its exhibit of historical circus memorabilia: 

In November I started to feel a lot better and came back to L.A.  See, here we are at Calico Ghost Town, an attraction in the desert in San Bernardino.  It's from when the area was being mined for silver.  It was my first time there.  It has kitschy reenactments of gun fights, a little shop with walls made of bottles:

and those wooden stand-ups with places for people to stick their heads through to pose for funny pictures (is there a specific name for them?):

Last but not least, Christmas 2015!!!!!!!:

Today is New Year's Eve and I'm going to see Morrissey play tonight, a good way to kick off a new year.  
Love and luck, dear readers.