Leslie Nuss

 
 

Blog

A day late

Well, we have snow, which is great, because I've been worried that winter is disappearing as we know it. But, that meant that the kids had no school yesterday, which meant that I had precious little time for thought, let alone typing. However, we did go out in the snow-deep. Pulled my son in a sled for awhile, but there was really too much snow for that, even. His grandfather took us out for a wild ride in an ATV which was great, as I had my phone and got some additional video for the song "Lost."

My son's caregiver suggested I shoot some in some kind of floaty dress, like a winter princess, but it's been hard to get one made. Though, I might make progress today. I have some silver ripstop nylon, that might be cool, as it would be outdoorsy and kind of tech and maybe even kind of cool. I really want to make another winter coat with it-think a circle, as in if you look at me, it would look like I'm in a circle, but that will be hard to do considering everything else I have going on. 

I have an antique plate strung up in a tree outside my studio windows (an all glass garage door, kind of cool) and it's nice to watch the birds come by. I really love the female cardinals, they don't seem to have many fans, but their coloring is really beautiful and I love their bright beaks. I have some chickadees and such and was told if I want bluebirds I need to put out some meal worms. I might ask my friend Nancy for some worms, as she has been attracting gobs of bluebirds to her deck on Flint Lake. She has an amazing view. Oop, I see a mommy cardinal and a bluejay. The birds are all trying to take turns and not get in each other's way too much. They walk straight down some trunks, wings out. 

My mind is consumed with generating ideas for videos. Yesterday my husband caught me acting out a potential scene for "Bell Tolls" which involves making some cool costumes. I get as excited about the costumes/clothing as I do about the video. But, then I realize you can just about insert anything into a video and it could look cool. I'm sure I'll try more and more things as time goes on.

I am also working harder on my voice. It's a muscle, is a little weak and needs some crossfit training. I have these old cassette tapes from when I made Action Hero Superstar and took voice lessons for over a year, so they are good for now. It's singing weird stuff and singing high and low, really. 

Yesterday I tried to play some piano-fooling around with a minor 7th chord, and even though my son used to tolerate my piano playing (mostly if I was playing Yankee Doodle) he abruptly came over and shut the lid on my fingers, which actually hurt. Then I had to say OWWW, because it did hurt, and then he laughed. And then I realized that he really is like a little buddha, and he was saying, "Ok, now what are you going to do? Are you going to stay cool?" And I wasn't even about to get angry with him, but I was more present to the whole encounter. It just reminded me of lifesaving, in the water, when you swim out to approach a swimmer who is in need of assistance and you get close, then sort of stop and swim a little bit away, to assess the situation. One of the things I remember most about Lifesaving is the concept of Double Drownings, where a person in danger in the water has the capacity to bring down a very good swimmer/lifeguard. Me being me, that concept has stayed with me and I think of it from time to time in dealing with other people/other situations. Maybe that's behind the phrase "Don't bring me down" in my song "Blake's England" Don't drown me, when I'm trying to save/help you, you know?

I'm also still organizing. Now I've been going through the bits and bobs in my design studio, relabeling things and reminding myself of what I have, especially as I go into Costume Shop mode. Right now my giant work table is covered with hair accessories stuff, remnants of things I did back in the day when one of my designs was on the cover of YM magazine, worn by none other than Michelle Williams. She's only gotten cooler with age, which is nice. I had no idea that my headband was going to be on the cover until they called me and asked for my information. I had just made a bunch of stuff to send over at the request/suggestion of my friend Jeffrey Marcus, whom I had worked for/made 1,000 plastic accessories (coin purses and the like) for his line Jinx. Jeffrey is now a gifted Floral Designer who always had an amazing work ethic. I did flowers with him one time in 2001 and still remember shopping with him in the floral district. What a cool job. I even bought myself some flowers today at Target of all places...

Anyway, ooh, now there is a woodpecker, or is it a Flicker at the bird feed plate. So cool, just a tiny bit of read on the head and then all black and white.

But, yes, I need to accessorize all these outfits for the videos, since I have a degree in accessories design and earned the only real money I have ever made designing them. Of course, it seems like an impossible task, but it's about breaking it down into smaller tasks, making lists, and then for me, it will be about not spending too much time getting it perfect. I can for sure make stuff that is not 100% finished-it's not like I'm going to sell it.

Today Pat Sansone of Wilco is recording some tracks for one of my songs at his studio in Nashville. I'm not there of course, but he's such a gentle beast in that he can just do one track after the next. It's quite amazing and intimidating to watch at the same time. I love the song--it's one of the first ones I wrote when I started writing again, one that had a lot of lyrics before I had something I wanted to say. Sometimes song lyrics are like nests, in that I weave bits and pieces into them, and this one is no different. I reference my old life of Action Hero Superstar, being a mother and experiencing some loss around that, my Great Aunt, life, aging, a line of Specx member Peter Kaifais'-- "Walk in Come Down" that's what he would tell us when we were coming over to rehearse, and the idea of the struggle of being a mother with any kind of ambition in addition to motherhood. 

I am going to search for the cover of the YM Magazine and add some photos to this post, but will post it right now because I have lost these posts in the past and losing this would upset me. 

I hope you are well and good and striving for good. xo Leslie

alright, for some reason I'm unable to upload photos at this time, but I will post some photos on this post asap. xo

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