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Lenore Zion Archive

Lenore Zion

Sunday Morning/The Party’s Over

October 4th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I call it the “Sunday Morning/The Party’s Over Depression.”

When I was a kid, my parents let me have birthday parties. An entire gaggle of prepubescent girls would swarm my house and play stupid games on Saturday. Most of these games don’t have official names. There was the one where we pretended to put each other into some sort of supernatural spell, a possession of some kind, and even though we all faked it, we also all thought it was real when another girl was possessed. This always made me think there was something wrong with me. Why can’t I become possessed? All the other girls can.

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Lenore Zion

What I Did In My Room

September 14th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

My first boom box was pale pink. It had a tape player and two speakers and an AM/FM radio. I never understood how to work the radio, but I did understand the tape player. This is what I used.

The boom box came in a package wrapped and tagged “To Lenore, From Nana.” Mind you, my grandmother had nothing to do with this gift. My parents just put her name on the tag, in order to both lighten the gift-shopping load on my mean-ass grandmother and to fool me into believing that the old bitch loved me at least a little. I wasn’t fooled, though. She’d revealed her true nature the Christmas before, when my parents wrote her name on the tag for the Pound Puppies I so desperately wanted. Upon enthusiastically thanking her for buying me what I desired most in the world, she disowned any involvement in the gifting. “I don’t even know what those things are,” she said to me, looking at my new Pound Puppies with irrational hatred.

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Lenore Zion

There Have Been Many Lies

August 30th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I had a friend in grade school named Krista.  I didn’t like when she came over to play with me because when she was around I had to eat dry cat food.

It was my own fault.  I told her I ate dry cat food, that I enjoyed it.  It wasn’t true.  I don’t know why I said it.  She didn’t believe me, so I had to prove it to her by, indeed, eating dry cat food in front of her.

It’s not that the taste is so horrible.  It’s really a texture thing.  It crumbles dryly in your mouth, and because the flavor isn’t fantastic, your mouth doesn’t respond with much saliva.  The result is a mouthful of paste that tastes very little like the “Chicken Dinner” it claims to be. (more…)


Lenore Zion

This Is My Excuse, Mom

August 25th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I was driving out of my neighborhood the other day when I stopped to let a man with his dog cross through the crosswalk.

He waved thank you to me, and began to cross.  Halfway through, he noticed the leash tighten in his hand.  His dog had discovered the perfect place to take a shit, and was performing his little poop-circles.  The man attempted to pull the dog toward the grass on the other side of the street, but the dog wasn’t budging.  The dog didn’t want to poop across the street.  This was the spot.

The dog began to poop. (more…)


Lenore Zion

A Relaxing Day at the Spa

July 24th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I went to a spa for the first time the other day.

Booked myself a massage and a facial at Burke Williams. It’s very fancy, and when I checked in I was immediately escorted to the ladies’ locker room, where there were Jacuzzi baths and showers and a sauna and a steam room and dozens of beauty products and expensive blow dryers and fuzzy bathrobes and towels, all of which were available to me.

I’d been told when I made the reservations that I should come at noon, as this was when the spa opened, and I was free to spend the entire day there, soaking in various baths with other naked women. (more…)


Lenore Zion

A Thousand Words: Baby Birds

July 6th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I’d say my life started at the approximate moment that my identical twin sister died next to me in my mother’s womb.

After that, it moves all over the place.  But that was the key moment, right then.  And it, being the key moment, has peppered every other moment in my life.

Before grade school – kindergarten, I believe:  I took piano lessons with a woman whose age I cannot remember.  She forbade her students to touch the keys of the piano.  We were “dirty little children,” and we could not be trusted to keep her piano, which was not actually her piano, but the school’s piano, clean.  Instead, we played “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” pounding out each note on the wooden plank that covered the keys when the piano was shut.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

Mass Hysteria is Still a Big Old Question Mark

June 26th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

A lot of strange things have gone down, from a psychological perspective.  Strange, inexplicable things.

Knowledge of psychological principles comes in handy daily, but there are some things that simply can’t be adequately explained, and all the studies in the world couldn’t come close to offering elucidations of bizarre happenings.

By a significant margin, obstetricians drop male babies more frequently than they drop female babies.

This is clearly noted in the statistics, yet possible rationalizations for why this may occur are weak.  Is it because males are seen as stronger physically, and thus they are handled with less grace?  Do male babies struggle more straight out of mommy’s womb?  No one really knows. (more…)


Lenore Zion

New Name, Same Sick Bitch

June 22nd, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I am now Lenore Szejn.  That’s my new name.  Or, actually, my name is still the old one, but from now on I will be writing under this name.

I got a call from a very nice professor today.  He thought my (real) name sounded familiar, so he googled me.

“Some, um, very provocative things came up,” he said.

He assured me that he was all for me expressing myself and doing whatever I wanted to do with my free time, but he wanted to let me know that if it was easy for him to find this stuff, it would also be easy for prospective employers to find this stuff, and for clients to find this stuff.  And that, I might not want.  Not after I discussed my use of the Squiggle Wiggle Writer. (more…)


Lenore Zion

Stuff I’ve Picked

June 11th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I lied to everybody except my best friend, Lisa, about how I’d gotten a massive scab on my chin.  This was a couple of years ago now, but at the time, I told everyone I’d gotten drunk and fallen on my face, a lie that aroused suspicion in not a single person who heard it.  What actually happened was that I’d aggressively made out with a particularly repulsive man whose face stubble had eaten through my skin until it was a bloody mess.  Literally, a bloody mess.  There was blood dripping down my chin at the end of this make-out session.  It took over a month and a half before my face healed.

Normally, I wouldn’t lie about making out with a random guy, but this one wasn’t someone I made out with for fun.  He had a split tongue, like a snake, and there was really no way I wasn’t going to make out with him.  When a man has a split tongue, you must.  You simply must.  I don’t know how else to describe it, other than that I didn’t have a choice in the matter.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

The Little Person Incident

June 10th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I was in a gas station because I needed a pack of Kool Kings.  In line in front of me was a retarded midget.  And I mean really retarded, as in mentally disabled.  Now, I am lacking in every midget-appropriate social grace known to man.  I have no idea how to behave when a midget, or otherwise tiny person, is nearby.  I often confuse them with children and speak to them as such.   Add retarded to the mix, and I’m outright socially crippled.  Additionally, after all this time, I’m still not sure if this retarded midget was a girl or a boy, or a man or a woman.  I am just going to refer to her as “her” because it’s easier that way.  Just keep in mind that she might have been a he.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

Looking, Living, Fucking, Fighting

May 20th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I like to listen to this couple in the building next to the one I live in. I like to listen to them have sex. I like to listen to them argue.

They’re old. In their seventies, I would guess. They wash their dishes in the nude. I see her breasts almost every week. Sometimes, when they fight, he tells her he doesn’t need her. She laughs at this.

When they don’t fight, or have sex, they disappear. No noise. I don’t know what they’re doing, because I can only see into their kitchen window, where her breasts are on display during dish-washing time. (more…)


Lenore Zion

Worth It Pain

May 5th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I have no memory of “the scene.” My entire neighborhood was standing around me in a circle, apparently, and I was bleeding everywhere.

This makes me experience two decidedly conflicting emotions: massive embarrassment and pure badass.

The source of the blood was mostly my face and my feet. Of course, my brain was bleeding as well, but that was internal and likely the cause of my fogginess and confusion.

I am very excited that my brain was bleeding. This is a rite-of-passage injury. I am now bona fide.

So I don’t remember a thing, not a single thing, until one fleeting moment in an ambulance. I was being restrained, and things were being inserted into my arms and my pants were being ripped from my body and I said: “But I don’t remember buying a scooter!” (more…)


Lenore Zion

Tell Me What You Think Counts as Mean so I Can Potentially Use it Against You

March 11th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

You know what really pisses me off?

People who leave a large gap between their car and the car in front of them at a red light.  It pisses me off when it’s not at a red light, too, but I understand that’s just a product of my road rage.  But at a red light?  What the fuck is wrong with these people?

I also get really pissed off when people drive slowly.  What counts as slow?  Well, how fast do you normally drive?  Whatever you answered, that’s too fucking slow.  Move it.  Drive faster.  Let’s all get where we’re going, please.

People who eat in public (restaurants don’t count) piss me off.  I saw a woman eating instant Ramen on a street corner today.  That’s fucking gross.  Go home and eat that shit.  I don’t want to see you slurp.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

Humor vs. Academia

February 18th, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I’m very concerned these days that humor is disappearing.

More often than not, I am punished for having a sense of humor.  There is apparently an “appropriate” time for humor and an “inappropriate” time for humor.

I’m trying to finish up my dissertation right now.  This is one of those “inappropriate” places for humor, it seems.  Here are a few sentences I included in one of my original drafts:

“The message: Watch out, good people.  The lunatic masturbators of the world are coming to get you.”

Authority forced me to revise what I believed to be a flawless thought.  Now it reads: (more…)


Lenore Zion

Squiggle Wiggle All The Way Home

January 22nd, 2009
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

When I was a kid, my mother, Irene, purchased for me a short-lived product called a Squiggle-Wiggle Writer.  The Squiggle-Wiggle Writer was a pen with a little motor that spun around at the top, causing a vibration, or a wiggle.  The result: instead of a straight line, the pen produced a squiggle.  I used to write my name millions of times when I was younger, like girls do with the names of boys they have crushes on, only I was at the time, and continue to be, a narcissist, so I wrote only my own name.  Lenore Lenore Lenore Lenore.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

Tallywacker Karma With Weiner Vageener

September 10th, 2008
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

As a child, I remember being bored by most of my playmate options.  I had fun with my brothers, so there wasn’t much need for outside interaction.

That changed when I met Gina.  There was something different about Gina.  I liked her immediately.  She was quiet.  She was timorous.  She didn’t have strong opinions.  Mostly, though, what I liked about her was that she was malleable.  Being friends with Gina was like having a life-sized doll to whom I could shrewdly transfer guilt in sticky situations.  (more…)


Lenore Zion

No Fur For The Fifth Grade Mafia

August 25th, 2008
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

In third grade, I came home from school crying. Some kids on the bus had teased me about my brown hair, calling me mousy. My bus was made up of kids from kindergarten through fifth grade, but the fat cats of the bus were a group of nasty fifth graders, drunk with the sweet power of being the oldest.

“It’s not fair, Mom,” I whined to her willing ears. “I hate my boring, ugly, brown hair.”

“Well, Joanna from down the street is bald because she has cancer. Would you rather be bald and dying of cancer like Joanna from down the street?”

“Yes,” I said.

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Lenore Zion

Death And Me: A Love Story

August 18th, 2008
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

I was in a full panic before my mother said anything at all. I didn’t want to ask what was going on, because her face and her shaking hands were confusing me. Usually, when I was in trouble, my father looked at me a certain way, and then it was clear, I’d been caught. But Dad wasn’t there, and all I had to go by were my mother’s ambiguous signals.

Finally, she spoke. “Your grandmother tried to kill herself today. She put a bag over her head and tried to suffocate herself.”

God, I was so relieved.

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Lenore Zion

The Real Question Is: Can I Benefit Financially From My Maladaptive Behavior?

August 12th, 2008
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES-

I went into shock a few weeks ago.

I was getting tattooed. That’s what did it. I’m in the process of tattooing a large blackbird on the left side of my body, over my ribcage and side. Right where that curve happens on a non-anorexic woman’s body.

You Midwesterners know what I’m talking about.

The first session was bad. It was really bad. As I said, I went into shock. I left shivering and confused.

Going into shock has psychological effects.

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Lenore Zion

I Need A Shot Of Testosterone

June 9th, 2008
by Lenore Zion

LOS ANGELES, CA-

Recently, my mother alerted me to the fact that, as a child, I “really loved nursing.”

This information was delivered to me via text message. I was just sitting there, cuddling with my cat, Hege, and my phone beeped. For some reason, that afternoon my mother decided it was time for me to know that I loved to breastfeed.

It seems she had been looking at old photographs of me and had been reminded of my powerful need to feed by the size of my face in one picture in particular.

I sent her a text message in reply: “GROSS.”

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