Sunday, January 31, 2010

Making Porn With Mom

My mother tells me when I was a shy little girl in kindergarten, I wrote a story about a gumball machine, apparently comparing the little round balls of varying colors to people in the world. I'd share the poem with you, but my mother wasn't exactly the type of parent who kept those kinds of things. No little shoebox of priceless memories or scrapbooks full of photos for her. I'm guessing she read it, smiled, then rolled something into the tiny piece of paper and smoked it.

I should note, my mother is the type of mother who would, years later, wake me with a three a.m. phone call, "I just had the best idea for a porn movie!!" What followed was a three hour trip to a local store the next day, where I was horrified to find the toy dolls made for young girls now look suspiciously like whores. Out of this shopping adventure came a three page script for a movie that could only be described as Barbie-Porn.


Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Bait Pile

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The Bait Pile was an official selection of The Chashama Film Festival, 2008. I play an agorophobic woman living with her mother and luring YouTuber’s to my house, killing them.

I eventually suffocate my mother in a bowl of green Jell-O. I’m not sure what Bill Cosby would have to say about that but it was certainly disconcerting to 8 year old autistic Jaxson--my little guy. As I edited the Jell-O scene, Jaxson sat behind me, watching. At one point, he came around to look at me, took my face in both hands and said, “Thas’ not nice.”

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We promoted The Bait Pile on YouTube and had a few people thinking I was actually a psychopath. I had been managing about 6 or 7 different fake YouTube accounts for months prior to actually beginning my killing spree and then ‘tubers began dropping like flies.

Victim #1

Victim #2

Victim #3

Victim # 4


The Nanna Chronicles

(EXCERPT from I Wish I Were Engulfed in Flames…(my recently finished humor memoir dealing with my family and my autistic kids.)

Before Mom and I started getting professionals to bring our scripts to the screen, we played every role, including actors. Years before that, we tortured our family members by putting a camera in their faces every time one of them turned around. At some point they became used to it, and the whole family got involved. Freud would probably have something to say about the fact that in every story, one of us is either mentally or physically tormenting the other.

My filming obsession might require a twelve step program at some point. But for now, those in my sphere will just have to deal with it.

One year, we planned a birthday celebration for Nanna and decided to kill two birds with one stone; scripting an idea for a short film that ended up requiring a bit of improvising.

In case you haven’t figured it out by now, not much is sacred in my family.

Nothin’ says lovin’ like being made the butt of a deliciously inappropriate joke for their birthday, then having it posted to one of the most visited social-networking-slash-video-sharing sites on the internet.

Nanna was seventy-nine at the time, and in retrospect, we could have given her a heart attack. But that’s not what we were thinking about when we called the funeral home and inquired about purchasing a cremation urn identical to the one that housed my grandfather’s ashes.

After a nice birthday celebration and the distribution of presents, my mother, sister and I hid in the upstairs bathroom with the urn stand-in and hatched our plan. Aunt JoAnn wasn’t in on the scheme, and it might have been a good idea to clue her in.

Mom put the wooden box into a small duffel bag and set it at the end of her dock by the lake. We lured Nanna outside and Resi held her hand, just in case she got too close to the side. We didn’t want her going into the water since she can’t swim; killing Nanna on her seventy-ninth birthday wasn’t the plan.

Giving her ticker a little jolt was.

My step-father took me out on the water in a small, aluminum boat so I had a front row seat from which to film.

As Resi pretended to show Nanna a turtle in the water, Mom snuck around, removed the box from the duffel bag and prepared to toss it into the lake. Okay, so here’s where the ‘short film’ portion of our little escapade went south. Mom chucked the box; it landed a mere three feet away from the dock and bobbed in the water.

Nobody said anything for a long time, awaiting Nanna’s response.

“That’s not your father,” she said, rolling her eyes.

JoAnn, however, was a bit more gullible. There was a fair amount of yelling. This, set against the backdrop of me laughing from the boat as the camera jerked around, ensuring anyone viewing the video footage later would need a Dramamine or two.

Kind of like The Blair Witch Project.

Nanna yelled at Mom for making JoAnn upset, while Resi and I waited for the right time to spill the beans. Of course, we let the camera roll for a while first.

“Okay, now go get the God damned box!” Nanna yelled.
The script flopped, but we were bound and determined to get it right, so after fessing up, Nanna and JoAnn decided to play along. I came in off the boat, found another angle and we prepared for take two.

We’d use the footage from the beginning of the scene, up to the yelling, and then we’d improvise, adding more conflict.

All good stories need conflict.

Resi decided it would be funny if someone actually went into the water, and the rest of us decided she should be that person.

Take two.

JoAnn pushed past Resi and Nanna, tried to get the box away from Mom, and in the process my sister ended up in the water. It didn’t occur to me until after Resi had joined the box in the murky lake that it was full of snakes and alligators.

For those of you interested in the behind-the-scenes lead up to the previous video, here you go!



Nanna's YouTube Page:


Sunday, January 17, 2010


Spam is ruining my life. Just last week two e-mails from friends ended up relegated to my ca-ca box, which gets hundreds of submissions daily. Apparently SPAM thinks I’m an agent and they’re querying the life right out of me.

I do not have the time to skim every spam email subject and I certainly won’t be opening anything in my SPAM box. I’ve had three computers crash because of viruses-- I refuse to, again, become some Trojan Horse’s bitch.

I find myself wondering if SPAM is privy to some personal information about me, because some of the topics bear a striking resemblance to my own ‘issues’:

--Sculpt your body with Liposuction!

--Loose twenty pounds in twenty days on the Cabbage Diet!

--Stop smoking without a pill, patch or any willpower whatsoever!

I don’t care to know how I can grow new hair in as little as six weeks or tighten my neck muscles. I have no extra money for term life insurance, have little desire to ‘reach my educational goals’ with a degree in finance online, nor do I need to ‘get my freedom back with a powered wheelchair’.

I’d rather shave off my eyebrows than ‘start my very own Disney music collection’. Learn my credit score? Yeah, that’s a morsel of knowledge I’m happy to remain blissfully unaware of, thanks. I have no desire to purchase a Hover-round or take a tiptoe around the topic of penile enhancement.

--Date real cheating wives!

Huh? I’m not even sure what that one means, but if it involves those ho’s from Jersey Shore, count me out.

And I’m not sure what’s going on with all of the money people regularly offer me to help them disburse their vast amounts of wealth, but there seems to be a glut of death-bed entreaties from Zimbabwean emissaries filtering in.

In conclusion, and with all due respect:

SPAM, I benevolently invite you to f*&k off.

Jeni ;)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Chick on Vibrators

This is my Nanna. She's 84 now and pretty much says anything she wants to. She's completely lost that edit function that keeps one from, let's say, announcing to the entire matinee crowd at the local moviehouse that she, "Never did like the sex, and then you had to douche...too messy. No thanks."

There's a link to her YouTube account.


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