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Zoe Brock Archive

Zoe Brock

A Thousand Words: My Childhood, or, Plastic Tits and Ass

September 2nd, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

I am about eight years old in this photo. The little boy I am towering over is about four. His name is Louis. The 1950’s love-bot next to poor, distraught, little Louis is, indeed, yours truly. For the record Louis did not want to be wearing that frilly dress and bonnet, but I can be very persuasive. Even as a child I had a thing for men in drag.

When I look at this picture I feel profound joy. I smile at those skinny legs, laugh at that proud expression, and am filled with a sense of pride and love for my silly little self. I want to hug me.

There was no adult help in the conception and preparation of this get-up. It was my own creation, my own vision, a vision of a sullen housewife, perhaps, or maybe a haughty hooker. I’m not sure. I have no idea what I was thinking, but I know I loved it. I loved that blond curly wig, those red prostitute heels, that green synthetic monstrosity, those strap-on, plastic, Dolly Parton tits with their enormous pronounced, engorged nipples. I remember the hilarity that ensued whenever I donned that outfit and slunk into a room of adults. I didn’t understand why it was funny, but I loved the reaction.

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Zoe Brock

Dice Day

August 6th, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

The only reason I’m writing this story is because I rolled a four.

I suppose I’d better explain.

My boyfriend and I woke up at 5am. He has jet-lag after arriving home last night from a two-week trip to Serbia and I’m recovering from a month long intensive course in Yoga teacher training that has left my sleep patterns in tatters.

5am is a kooky time.

At 5am the world is quiet and the day stretches out before you like happy infinity.

At 5am the possibilities seem endless and the decision making somewhat daunting, so we cracked out the Backgammon board, pilfered a die from the game and started rolling.

Roll # 1 - an even number we have eggs and toast and a cup of tea, odd number we have cereal and coffee. We rolled a three. Neither of us drink coffee. We are currently very awake.

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Zoe Brock

How The Nervous Breakdown Changed My Life

July 5th, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

A little over three years ago a friend of mine in South Florida sent me a Craigslist post from a gentleman in the Los Angeles area seeking writers for a new website. The writers had to fit two criteria. They should be situated on any part of the planet, the weirder and more varied the location the better, and they must be able to write good creative non-fiction. When I received the email I was holed up in a mansion bordering a golf course on the outskirts of Cascais, Portugal with an injured leg and a bored and shitty attitude. I fit the first part of the bill, for I was definitely living in a weird and remote location, but I was no writer, oh no, never would be. Not me.

My friend in Miami pestered, cajoled, threatened and persevered and, one night, tipsy on Beaujolais, I relented and sent off an awkward, self-conscious and self-deprecating letter to the guy who’d posted the ad.

Two days later I got a reply from a dude called Brad Listi. He was a Real Writer with a Real Book, and A Blog, and Ambition, and Motivation, and Credibility, and he said something that changed my life forever.

He liked my work.

It’s amazing what a little approval can do.

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Zoe Brock

Would You Like To Read The Introduction To My Memoir?

June 30th, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

In 1988 I was fourteen years old, five-foot-nine, skinny, flat-chested and at least four more years away from any proper evidence of puberty. To compound all of this luminous adolescent joy I was also morbidly shy and horrifically self-conscious. In short, I was a child. A bloody tall child, but a child nonetheless.

My hair was long and brown, my eyebrows heavy, my cheeks full. I was so thin, and so tormented by my thinness, that I ate as much as I could to try and gain weight. I ate all sorts of crap. Nothing happened. I remained, despite all efforts, a wisp of skin and bones, stumbling when I ran, blown hither and thither by gusts of strong wind and glances from strangers. The sad truth is that I come from a family of stick insects, and the physique I would later be grateful for was a thing of shame and sadness in my formative years. Victimized and scorned, I was teased mercilessly about my stature by other children. My nicknames were, amongst others: Olive Oyl, Bean Pole, Stick, Twig, and, my personal favorite, Inverted, a name given to me by the boys in my neighborhood in honor of my invisible breasts. Humiliated by my non-existent chest, I covered my body as much as I could and engaged, whenever possible, in the bust-increasing exercises I read about in Judy Bloom books.

These were not my glory days.

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Zoe Brock

Growing Up Model

February 15th, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

Recently I was asked what I wanted.

Not what I wanted in my tea or what I wanted on my salad, but what I wanted out of life.

Ugh.

This seemingly innocuous little query dredged up tumultuous feelings inside, forcing me to realize that-

A) the things I’ve always wanted had, while I wasn’t paying attention, morphed into something
different, and

B) that I needed to have a serious rethink before I could answer definitively.

I opened a bottle of wine and had a good chug from the neck. Clarification often accompanies a good Cabernet.

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Zoe Brock

I Love You. Now, Let Me Eat Your Face.

January 13th, 2009
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO-

When I was five or six years old my mother allowed me to adopt a kitten. For months I had been kicking up a juvenile stink, shedding precocious tears and wailing mournfully while beating my head against the floor and lamenting my lack of a pet to play with. I had fallen in love with a neighbor’s cat and was devastated when I couldn’t keep it as my own. I think it was quite late in the evening when my mother finally relented. My tantrums finally became too much to bear and we set off on a kitten procuring adventure. It didn’t take long. A quick browse through the paper, a short drive, a litter and Bingo! I was a young mother.

She was a soft little thing, tabby and sweet, and when I held her against my cheek I could hear her tiny heart beating out a swift tempo. Her minuscule claws tickled my skin like feathers. She was perfect. I loved her. I loved her with such force and desperation that I was overcome with a strange new sensation. I wanted to squeeze her until her head popped off.

And that was a pretty weird feeling to try and come to terms with at such a young age.

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Zoe Brock

Dad? Are You High?

November 12th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

Not so long ago, on a rare San Francisco day of surprising warmth and humidity, I was sitting at my nice orderly desk when an email appeared in my nice orderly inbox.

“Ping,” said my Google Notifier.

“Ooo,” said I. “Somebody loves me.”

The Google Notifier said nothing in response and I took it’s silence to mean that it was brimming over, like a fat and happy porcelain Buddha, with benign agreement.

I was right.

Somebody did love me…… and I am grateful.

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Zoe Brock

Tales from the Playa #2- The Essential and Definitive Burning Man List… Including Cow Prodders and Periscopes

October 9th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

It’s Wednesday, August 20, 2008.

The Man burns in ten days.

In three hours one of your best friends will arrive from Australia. You have not seen him in two months.

In fourteen hours the person who your heart and mind and body desires most will arrive from Israel. You have not seen him in four months. He will be followed shortly thereafter by his father, who will arrive from North Carolina. You have never met him at all.

In three days you will all leave together, in convoy, for eight days in the searing, brutal and unpredictable Nevada desert, driving through the night to take part in an event so wild, so beautiful, so bizarre and so life-changing that your brain cannot yet begin to fathom the most basic aspects of it, let alone it’s myriad intricacies.

And you haven’t even packed.

Yes. You may vomit now.

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Zoe Brock

Tales From The Playa #1- Re-birthing a Woman and Burning a Man

September 8th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

BLACK ROCK CITY, NV-

Your boots are white with dust as fine as talc. Insidious stuff. Your legs, your arms, your face, whatever clothing you have decorated your body with - all are white, silty and dry. Your skin reacts to the alkaline, shrinking, drying, withering, trying to escape it. But there is no escape. The dust is everywhere - in your eyes, your lungs, your ears, in every nook of your body, in every cranny, in every fold of fabric that adorns you, everywhere you look… your world is white. And so you trudge across this white world, this wide expanse of nothingness, bracing yourself against the whirling-dervish winds, staring blindly into the invisibility that surrounds you. You are cocooned in the nothing, strangely safe and yet completely assailable.

You have never felt more alone, more surrounded by love, or more alive. Your vulnerability is your greatest strength.

This post-apocalyptic landscape strengthens your resolve and buffers your sense of self.

You are at The End of the Earth.

Welcome Home.

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Zoe Brock

Hiking In Neon Crotchless Fishnet Bodystockings Should be Mandatory Therapy for the Fearful Among us - a Pictorial

August 18th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

MARIN COUNTY, CA-

I’m going to Burning Man this year.

Ten days in the dust and the wind and the heat and the cold and the chaos. Ten days of thumping base and lunacy and love. Ten days of…. I have no idea what.

Many conflicting words and feelings spring to mind- solitude, isolation, adventure, companionship, evolution, degeneration, transcendence, freedom, inhibition, self-consciousness, self-expression… the list goes on.

I’m a Burning man virgin and (due to a recent compulsion to drive myself completely mad) over the last few weeks my excitement levels have waxed, waned, teetered, tottered, disappeared entirely into a pit of anxious fear and then returned, tentatively, dressed up as clowns and hookers.

Perhaps I need to explain…

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Zoe Brock

If I Had Feathers I Would, Like, Totally Ruffle Them

July 24th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

I’ve just moved.

Not just houses, but cities and entire lives. It’s exciting and new, a bit like the theme song from the Love Boat, but with no Gopher, no dancing girls and no stopover in Rio.

Bummer!

For posterity’s sake I kept a bit of a journal of my first week in San Francisco and have decided to share it as a peek into the inner sanctum of my life. I’d call you all voyeurs for reading, but in actuality I’m just a hideous narcissist who wants to show you photos of my closet.

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Zoe Brock

Yes, I Need to Get Laid. No, I am Not Going to Have Sex With You.

July 22nd, 2008
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO-

Hello, my name is Zoë Brock and I am a hopelessly hopeful romantic.

Love and I have a long and sordid relationship. We’re stuck to each other with that cheap, tacky glue that never dries properly and gets hairs and other bits of icky dirt and effluvia stuck in it and ends up looking like a coughed up owl pellet, minus the skeletal bits. It’s horrible, trust me.

Sometimes I feel as if I live my life adhered to the cheap pulpy paper bound between the flowery covers of a Harlequin romance novel.

Sometimes I wonder if some sticky-fingered house-wife isn’t pouring over the sordid details of my love-life, swooning, moaning and gasping at the more elaborately descriptive paragraphs as she takes a break between episodes of ‘The Bold and the Beautiful’ and ‘Days of Our Lives’.

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Zoe Brock

Around And Around And Around And Around And…. Upchuck

April 13th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

LOS ANGELES, CA-

Circles make me happy.

My life is full of them.

Around and around and around I go.

Journeys in ever decreasing or widening arcs and loops and 360 degree migrations.

Some good. Some bad. Some painful.

Always educational.

In the last few months I’ve gone in so many circles that my head is spinning and I’ve taken to carrying an air-sickness bag in my pocket.

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Zoe Brock

Oh For Fucks Sake Somebody Please Do Something About All This Sunshine and Brightness and These Noisy Goddamn Birds

March 15th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

MIAMI, FL-

I am really hungover.

I stayed up late last night, doing blow and talking shit.

“When in Rome….”

Miami makes me behave like this guy-

Scarface

Of course, I’m only joking. In actuality, here in Miami, I tend to be act more like most of the other residents. The blue rinse and pinochle set. But without the blue rinse. Or the pinochle.

My time here has been lovely. Two weeks of sun and friendship, late nigh (more…)


Zoe Brock

How To Turn Your Lover Into A Nepalese Mountain Guide and Other Helpful Hints For Not-Managing Your Life

March 9th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

MIAMI, FL-

“Tis not the amount of stress one copes with, but the grace with which one handles it, that is the measure of a persons strength.”

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I said that!

“Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom before you even know you’re falling.”

I said that too!

I’m wicked fucking smart sometimes, but it’s a crying fucking shame that I’m terrible at following my own advice.

I need a t-shirt made up with “I’m a hypocrite” on the front and “No I’m not” on the back.

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Zoe Brock

Caffeinated Ranting- A Series Of Open Letters From A Coffee Shop In San Francisco In The Pouring Rain

February 26th, 2008
by Zoe Brock

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-

Life

Dear Life,

I hope this letter finds you well, happy, and infinitely less confusing and melodramatic than you were when I was writing it. Just to be on the safe side I think I’ll wait a few hours before sending this just to give you a chance to mellow out, you highly strung weirdo.

Yours, with infinite respect,

Zoë. (more…)


Zoe Brock

Yo! Can I Get a Happy Ending Over Here? I Paid Ten Bucks and Everything…

December 13th, 2007
by Zoe Brock

LOS ANGELES, CA-

Lately I’ve been thinking about happy endings.

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Saccharine, syrupy movies like When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle and The Wedding Planner provide us (grown-up children, tragic idealists and/or reluctant romantic addicts) with modern day fairy tales of love and fate and last minute redemptive decisions. The clever makers of these films throw happy endings in our upturned, wide-eyed, expectant faces like great handfuls of wet confetti at a rained-out wedding, confetti that hits us in the head with all it’s sad, damp, pastel glory and then slides to the floor with a resounding PLOP.

It’s inevitable.

It’s what we pay for.

It’s revolting.

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Zoe Brock

Mum

September 27th, 2007
by Zoe Brock

LOS ANGELES, CA-

The greatest gift my mother ever gave me was the gift of knowing I was loved.
In a cruel and often scary world this one fact gives me peace.

Perhaps I am biased, but I think my mama is beautiful, even in a plastic garbage bag.

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Zoe Brock

Sexual fumblings on the fringe of insanity and dabblings in messy innuendo with firehoses and letters to Santa. Nothing unusual here-

June 14th, 2007
by Zoe Brock

Hollywood, CA-

Sex.

Three letters, one syllable, one tiny word, all saturated with meaning, oozing with intent, dripping with ramifications, bursting, overflowing, filled to the brim and jammed to the hilt with slippery, steaming, sodden innuendo.

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Ah.

Sex.

The word starts off softly… sssssssss… and ends with a jab. Hard and pointy. Ecks.

Saying the word makes a mouth move in oddly arousing ways.

Say it. (more…)


Zoe Brock

Of drugs and feeling fuzzy in the aftermath of agony and the hilarious torture of chiropractics and genital hair removal

June 12th, 2007
by Zoe Brock

HOLLYWOOD, CA-

Bikiniwax

There has been some confusion.

Am I awake?

The nerves in my arms tingle with a foreign feeling. I am full of electricity yet deadened with a heavy, burdensome weight. The fluff in my brain has bits of lint in it. I sift through the fluff and lint with nonchalance. Is that… is that… a pube? I’m almost grossed out but can’t be bothered. The light filtering through the curtains has a white, mid-morning beauty, a twinge of magic, of impending fun. I giggle. (more…)