OOTD: Blushing at the Slutcracker

Last month I went to see The Slutracker, one of Somerville’s most awesome holiday traditions. It’s a burlesque parody of the Nutcracker, using all of the original classical music, and a variety of dancing styles from ballet to hula hooping to flamenco to pole dancing.

plus size outfit light pink tutu and coat in front of slutcracker signs
Of course I had to dress as over-the-top as possible to go see it (although I did remove my giant hair flower before the show started, so as not to block anyone’s view). I’ve been really into blush and black color schemes lately, so I put together as much pale pink as possible with some black sequins for balance.

plus size outfit blush tutu and black sequin cardigan

Coat: Nicolette Mason for ModCloth, tutu: Zelie for She via Re/Dress, top: Re/Dress, cardigan: Kohl’s, shoes: L.L. Bean, necklace and earrings: Betsey Johnson via eBay, butterfly veil and giant flower: ASOS, other jewelry: miscellaneous, tote bag: LeSportSac via eBay Continue reading

Is creativity dead in Boston? Not the one I know.

bridge covered in rainbow slinkies

An installation by artist Lisa Greenfield during the Fort Point Open Studios, 2009

Social critic Sarah Kendzior’s latest piece, Expensive cities are killing creativity, didn’t sit right with me. Normally, I find myself all but jumping up and down in agreement with her work–but this time, I found much of her analysis jarringly at odds with my own experience.

Kendzior describes expensive coastal cities like New York and San Francisco as “gated citadels,” playgrounds for the rich, places where corporate pressure and the high cost of living reward conformity and stifle creativity. (Although she doesn’t mention Boston specifically, she does include it in a follow-up tweet.)

But my Boston doesn’t feel corporatized, sanitized, like a gated citadel. My Boston isn’t a place where creativity is undervalued, or valued only when it enriches wealthy children. My Boston certainly isn’t a place where “you live when you are born having arrived.”

My Boston is vibrant and creative as hell. Especially here in Somerville, where I’ve lived for five and a half years–and which has the second-highest concentration of artists in the country.

First off, I can’t talk about creativity in Boston without mentioning the folk dancing and music scene, which has been the base of my social circle for as long as I’ve lived here. There’s an incredible number of regular social dance events, culminating in the yearly NEFFA festival, a veritable folkie paradise of singing, jamming, dancing, and outdoor cuddle piles. We have gender-free contras, guerilla contras, a dance and music camp in nearby Plymouth, lots of overlap with the swing and blues dancing scene, great concerts at Club Passim and other venues–and most importantly, a strong sense of community. Individual people may come and go, but the community stays–and I doubt it’s going away anytime soon.

Outdoor contra dance in Copley Square, 2007.

Continue reading