Friendly Friday: Comfort Zone



















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Queenie: #bookreview

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40539165-queenie

In the book Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams, Queenie is a fictional character but she’s very real. She could be our friend, neighbor, co-worker. It’s possible that you know someone like Queenie. Of course, above everything else that makes Queenie who she is, she is a human. Fictional but still human.

She is also Jamaican British woman who is in the middle of a crisis. Everything in her world is falling apart. Her boyfriend, Tom, has left her. He’s white and kind of a jackass. Although she didn’t realize she was pregnant, Queenie has had a miscarriage. She’s probably going to lose her job. She has some serious issues with her mother, father, and step-father.

After the break-up with Tom, Queenie starts heading down a path of self-destruction that many of us know all too well – namely unprotected sexual activity. It all becomes too much for her to deal with and Queenie has a mental collapse.

On top of everything else, she has to move in with her grandparents and begins therapy. Honestly, it was the best place for her to be while she was recovering from a nervous breakdown.

I liked this book quite a bit. Queenie was a hot mess; but who hasn’t been at some point? She’s so real and honest as a character that I forget that she’s not a real person. This is one of those cases where I wish that a fictional character existed.

There were some friendly reminders in this book that I’d like to mention.

  • Don’t touch anyone’s hair. Just. Don’t.
  • If you are curious about someone’s hair, it’s better to ask questions than to invade their personal space.
  • Stereotypes are bullsh**.
  • Just don’t touch anyone without an invitation.
  • Treat all people like . . . well, people.
  • I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for doing a review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.

Interview with . . . Erin Incoherent

https://erinincoherent.bandcamp.com/

Erin Incoherent is the coolest. She’s definitely a punk rocker in appearance as well as the sentiment of her music. The music itself is like acoustic punk. If there were some more stringed instruments, her music would be folk punk. Incoherent does play the ukulele. You don’t see a ukulele in punk rock too often.

Anyway, since she was cool enough to grace us with her answers to our most pressing questions. Don’t forget to check out her links and the video after reading the interview.

How did you get into playing the ukulele?

My mom purchased me one for Christmas a few years ago and I’ve been playing around on it ever since.

What led to moving to Philadelphia from Colorado?

It was a culmination of being unable to remain in the same hometown filled with ghosts and memories and my heart calling me somewhere else. An old friend told me he would be looking for a new roommate in Philadelphia if I or anybody I knew would be interested. I told him I was.

Who would you pick?: Erin Incoherent or Erin Coherent

Erin Incoherent was my stage name from my very first punk band so that’s why I chose it when I re-labeled my music from my birth name. I like it because it rhymes and because I’m not actually incoherent. My lyrics make a lot of sense if you’re listening to them, but I feel like a lot of the sentiment can get lost in the poppier sounding and more upbeat songs, like Medusa. (Which is about getting on and off of antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications.)

What advice would you give to anyone with anxiety issues?

Hmm, I feel like you either have time to be avoidant or be reactionary. You can either map out things to do to avoid being triggered, or you can create an evacuation route for once you’ve been thrown into an anxious environment. Now sometimes people feel anxious for no reason. And my advice is to learn to identify your surroundings and perhaps employ grounding techniques (what are 5 things you can see, 4 things you can touch, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell, and 1 thing you can taste) as these have been found as effective in identifying how your body reacts in stressful situations.

Why do you think Medusa is still so interesting?

As a track? Because it’s dark with content but lively as a song. I think that kind of dichotomy can reel you back in again and again. You can listen to it mad, sad, groovin or glad and it’s going to greet you differently each time. As an album? Because it was made in a very transitional time period for me and I think a lot of people will hear that reflected in their own journies. I think there’s a lot of different elements at play musically throughout the album, and that always helps to keep the ear of the listener as well.

Is that a tattoo of Frieda Kahlo on your bicep?

Yes. I’ve been captivated by her since the first time I learned about her in one of my high school classes. She’s always seemed to honor herself and her heart. She overcame so much in her life and still did it all in her own way. She knew pain and love and travel and creation and loss quite vividly. I adore her work and writings. Though I really do wish she had just stayed away from Diego.

Where was your first show as a fan? as a performer?

The first show was 2005 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado to see Green Day on their American Idiot tour. First performer show was probably the 7th-grade talent show. That must’ve been 2006. But overall, I’ve jumped behind the mic every chance I’ve gotten growing up.

Do you have a favorite show on TV/Netflix?

If I’m on Netflix, I’m either pilot surfing (just watching the first episode of random new shows) or watching cool house shows or blue planet 2 or serial killer documentaries

What kind of books are you into – if you’re into reading?

The last book I finished was lent to me by my roommate, who is an avid reader of many different tastes. It’s called ‘The Weight of This World’ by David Joy and it was truly a good read. It’s one of those books where action meets consequence in a grizzly and dismal way, and how what remains afterwards can inspire a new life.

What do you want people to know about Erin Incoherent?

I’d like them to feel like they know me when they listen to Medusa and see the lyrics. I’d like them to know that there’s somebody else who understands feelings of worthlessness and fear and I’d like them to feel inspired to move through their problems with new options. I guess to say it shortly, I want people to know I want to help. That I understand feeling viciously unwanted and that I have also learned to viciously love myself despite some persons best efforts. That new future can exist out of harsh sadness and pain.

Links:

Erin Incoherent on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/erinincoherent/

Erin Incoherent on Spotify :https://open.spotify.com/album/7q4bN7V66ASpdin4ODyqVP

Erin Incoherent on Twitter: https://twitter.com/erin_incoherent?s=09

Nick is Your Buddy with the music: https://www.radioreadypr.com/

Cold and Deadly by Toni Anderson Released Today

Today, Cold & Deadly, the latest book by Toni Anderson, will be available everywhere that books are sold.

I received an ARC but have only read a few pages so far. We will all have to wait until next week to discover whether it’s worth reading. Since the book is a murder mystery, I signed up to do a blog tour.

I spend so much time watching mysteries and serial killer documentaries anyway. This book is totally within my comfort zone. Do you guys have a comfort zone for books?

Synopsis:

Hostage Negotiators can talk themselves out of anything—except falling in love.
FBI Supervisory Special Agent Dominic Sheridan is an accomplished expert in the Crisis Negotiation Unit. Practiced, professional, used to dealing with high-stake situations under tense conditions, Dominic is a master at manipulating people. Everyone, that is, but the headstrong rookie agent bent on destroying her fledgling career.
As a child, Ava Kanas put her life on the line when the mob executed her father. Now someone
has killed her mentor, the man who inspired her to become an FBI agent—and she’s the only
one who recognizes it was anything but a tragic accident.
When another agent is murdered and Dominic nearly dies, it becomes obvious a serial killer is targeting the FBI. Together Dominic and Ava search for clues in the investigation, all the while fighting a forbidden attraction that will complicate everything, especially when the predator sets their sights on Ava.


Get your hands on COLD & DEADLY now:
✦ Amazon: https://amzn.to/2MPXxq2
✦ Apple Books: https://apple.co/2MPDAj0
✦ B&N: http://bit.ly/2MOEjkF
✦ Kobo: http://bit.ly/2MQ8QhV
✦ Google Play: http://bit.ly/2MPhcWT✦ Add COLD & DEADLY on Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2MQJqRj

About Toni Anderson:
Toni Anderson is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, RITA® nominee, science
nerd, professional tourist, dog lover, gardener, mom. Originally from a small town in England,
Toni studied Marine Biology at the University of Liverpool (B.Sc.) and the University of St. Andrews (Ph.D.) with the intention she’d never be far from the ocean. Well, that plan backfired and she ended up in the Canadian prairies with her biology professor husband, two kids, a rescue dog,
and two laid-back leopard geckos. Toni started writing while pregnant with her first child and never stopped. Her greatest achievements are mastering the Tokyo subway, climbing Ben Lomond, snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, and surviving fourteen Winnipeg winters (fingers crossed). She loves to travel for research purposes and was lucky enough to visit the Strategic
Information and Operations Center inside FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. in 2016, and she also got to shove another car off the road during pursuit training at the Writer’s Police Academy in Wisconsin. Watch out world!

Toni’s books have hit #1 in Barnes & Noble’s Nook store, and the Top 10 on Amazon, Kobo, and iBooks. Her novels have won many awards.
Website: http://www.toniandersonauthor.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/@toniannanderson

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/toniannanderson
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/toni_anderson_author/

Sleep Deprived Music Review: Big Joanie

https://bigjoanie.bandcamp.com/album/sistahs

Big Joanie is a British feminist punk band, which includes band members
Stephanie Phillips, Chardine Taylor-Stone and Estella Adeyeri.

The quote that Big Joanie has about themselves is very accurate:
We’re like The Ronettes filtered through 80s DIY and riot grrrl with a sprinkling of dashikis.

In November 2018, Big Joanie released their album, Sistahs. I’ve been following the band on Facebook for several months. So whenever I get distracted by all of male rock bands, they seem to pop up on the newsfeed – like they know I need some feminist punk music in my life.

Trust me. We all need feminist punk bands like Big Joanie in our lives. I’m always so happy when the members of a punk band are talented musicians and songwriters. I find Big Joanie to be rather charming and intoxicating. My favorite songs on the Sistahs album are “How Could You Love Me” and “Cut Your Hair.”

Please do yourself a favor and check out their music!

Links:

Big Joanie on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bigjoanie/

Big Joanie on Twitter: https://twitter.com/big_joanie

Friday Favorite Photo Challenge: Revisited

Dollskin. Warped Tour, Cleveland, Ohio. July 2018




Jakob. July 2017
Merry-go-Round Museum, Sandusky, Ohio. July 2016
Being As An Ocean. July 2015
Mayhem Festival. Red Rocks Amphitheater, Colorado. 2014
Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite. Royal Oak, Michigan. 2013

So for the prompt, Revisited, I decided to post photos that I have taken or posted every July. Since I started this blog in July 2013, it seemed like a good place to start.

The only photo that wasn’t taken in July was the one of the marquee. However, it was one of the first photos that was posted on the blog. So it still counts.

https://forestwoodfolkart.wordpress.com/2019/02/01/friendly-friday/

https://thesnowmeltssomewhere.wordpress.com/friendly-friday-photo-challenge/

Sleep Deprived Music Review: Jessica Pratt

https://jessicapratt.lnk.to/QuietSigns?fbclid=IwAR008faBGaRteY_kAWMZXF808kc1n1_UptDRBYKV68CJ9qJSwn9Cff-qG6g

We can thank Jessica Pratt’s mother for filling their house with music. Pratt picked up her brother’s old guitar one day and taught herself to play. Since that day, her life has been focused on singing and songwriting.

Pratt’s newest album, Quiet Signs, will be out on February 8. She doesn’t sound like anyone else. Her voice is very distinctive. If you can think of someone similar, let me know.

It’s not just her voice that will keep you listening. The lyrics and the music kept me focused. I just wanted to play this album, drink coffee and just listen. Something about Pratt’s music has a meditative quality.

Pratt is going on tour in March. She’ll be in Europe until mid-April. Pratt will be doing shows in the states by late April.

I enjoyed this album so much. I truly believe that many of you guys will love it as well.

Jessica Pratt on Bandcamphttps://jessicapratt.bandcamp.com/album/quiet-signs

Sleep Deprived Single Review: Nicole Bus

https://open.spotify.com/album/6ByZxyEnEtLSFqJUmXVdTP?si=mZxd8_fPTfmMqifMbF-q5Q

This morning I was searching for something or someone. I didn’t know who but I would know when their voice was coming through the speakers. Twitter almost distracted me from the mission. Thank goodness Twitter didn’t rule the day.

God answers prayers sometimes. He or she answered mine by guiding the cursor to Nicole Bus on Spotify. She has a fairly new song out called “You.” I haven’t been so in love with a song in a little while. The song had me hooked before the 30-second mark.

If you enjoy R & B or Lauryn Hill, then you will probably love Nicole Bus too. She doesn’t sound exactly like Ms. Hill but she might fill that empty space in my heart that Ms. Hill has left. Hopefully, we’ll hear more music from Ms. Bus soon.

Links:

Nicole Bus on Twitter: https://twitter.com/thenicolebus

Nicole Bus website: https://www.nicolebus.com/

Bus Stop Sessions

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Several years ago, I started to write this post about my youngest daughter. At the time she was six. Now she is ten and I wish the conversations with her were this easy or entertaining.

Something is going on with her. I ask her but she says she’s fine. I have also discovered that she lies effortlessly so I don’t believe her exactly. I want to believe her. I really do.

She’s also been eating ice cream in the middle of the night. So far we’ve found six cartons. Not to mention the candy wrappers and yogurt containers.

Today, I have to pick her up from detention . . . again.  Everyday I sound like Marvin Gaye: What’s going on? But with more eye rolling and aggravation.

So let’s revisit the time when my baby told me everything, even when it was too much information.

March 2015:

The conversations at the bus stop with Little Sister #2 are interesting.  Some mornings, the topics come out of nowhere.

Yesterday, she said, “Do you know why I don’t want you to die?”

I answered, “No. Why?” At this point, I have no idea. It could be anything.

She said, ” Because I love you so much. ”

The school counselor says it is normal for her to worry.

My favorite thing is when she sings along with the radio. It cracks me up that she knows the words to rock music. (FYI: I do not let her watch the videos.)

One morning, I tried an experiment. I switched to the country channel to see if she noticed. I never listen to the country station so I wondered if she liked country music.

Nope. She most certainly does not.

She piped up right away. Basically, she asked me to turn it back. Now we know that she likes Slipknot and Katy Perry.

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Sleep Deprived Music Review: Health

Health website: http://youwillloveeachother.com/

https://soundcloud.com/healthnoise

I had no idea what this album by Health would sound like. Honestly, I expected industrial metal like Rammstein. It’s not – so we can all breathe again. No offense to Rammstein fans, like my boyfriend. Industrial metal is not something I’ve acquired a taste for yet.

So back to this band, Health, and their album “Vol4: Slaves of Fear.” They have a sound that is a mixture of genres: metal, electronica and maybe a touch of ten other genres.

The singer – Jacob Duzsik – has a voice unlike most metal or electronica band vocalists. It’s more like an angel than a demon. While I’ve been listening to the album, I’m reminded of when I would hang out at the vampire bar. There weren’t really vampires but the music was kind of weird and other-worldly, yet completely awesome. The same words could be used to describe Health. So if you are into weird, awesome vampire-like music, check out Health.