THEBATHTUBPROJECT

exploring vulnerability and transparency one bath at a time

Tag: Freedom

Kalani Naihe

Kalani Naihe

 

Date of Interview: October 3, 2016

Name: Kalani Naihe

Age: 23

Pronouns: She/Her/They/Them

Location: Philadelphia, PA

 

If you were an underwater creature which one would you be?

Ohhhhh good question. I would probably be an orca. I really like whales, I think they’re really cool and interesting creatures and like, they just swim around and shit, it’s pretty cool.

What are you passionate about?

Very passionate about the DIY music scene, booking shows, being vegan and embracing my queerness. That’s something that is very new and very fun to become more passionate about. I never… I mean, it’s strange to me to talk about because I’m really new to this whole embracing my queerness thing. I’ve always been like, I’m definitely pansexual and I’ve always thought that my whole life. I’ve been very into loving people for who they are but recently come out to those that are close to me as non-binary when it comes to my gender so I started using they/them pronouns and I think that just making sure that my queerness doesn’t doesn’t get lost in relationships with those who are not. And I think that’s very important. In the past I’ve let people over step boundaries with that for me, like they kind of dictate my level of queerness especially if I’m dating a cis, straight male. So I’ve recently became very passionate about learning and accepting who I am instead of just letting someone else, just because they’re around a lot, dictate that I am this person that I know I am.

Do you feel like you have to carve out spaces that you exist in?

Always. Absolutely, especially because I book shows and being a queer promoter and trying so hard to be inclusive of everybody. It’s like having a third job a lot of the time. A lot of the time I feel overwhelmed by trying to make sure that my space in which I’m occupying is safe for those around me and for those who are also attending. It’s everything from entering into my home, to going to a show, it’s so important to be aware of. Lately I’ve been going through a lot, I moved back into this house after a year after some bad things happened and everyone just took me back in, but I feel better being around other people who are queer. They just sort of encompass my life. Having my friends, even having people in my life who aren’t queer, just making sure those people in my life are also accepting of who I am… All of my friends are and I feel so good and confident about it. But it’s important for me to dictate what is safe for me and those around me. Cuz people do look up to me when it comes to all of that stuff because of how loud I am and how I’m in charge of the spaces that people are in, especially for shows and stuff.

What do you think of relationships? Platonic, sexual or otherwise?

My platonic relationships are soooooooo important to me. I love all of my friends with my whole heart, and I always have, that’s just the way I’ve been my whole life. My platonic relationships, because they’ve always gone better than my romantic ones, have always meant more to me. That’s definitely one of the reasons why my romantic relationships have failed, because I have tried so hard to make sure that if I’m in a romantic relationship, my platonic ones will not be overlooked at all. They’re so important. I don’t know where I would be today if I hadn’t met my best friend five years ago. And if I have ever treated them terribly or completely disappeared on them or whatever because of getting into a relationship they wouldn’t be here today. So it’s definitely paid off, caring so much about platonic relationships. The people I surround myself with are like family to me because my family is over 500 miles away. I think it’s important for everyone to think of their friends like that. You get to choose them so you should put as much effort into them as anything else, they’re important.

What is something you’re afraid of for yourself?

The future. It’s very scary and uncertain. I think about it all the time and it terrifies me. I’m soooooo scared of it because every aspect of it is scary. Things that are going on politically are scary, it’s sooooo fucking terrifying and then jsut my everyday life, like what am I going to do in two years!? What am I gonna do in two months? Because everything has been so uncertain for me lately and I’ve been kind of just going with the flow, doing whatever. I don’t know. The future. The future is very scary and I’m terrified of it.

What do you wish you had known when you were 15?

I wish 15 year old me, I’m going to go into this crazy vegan thing because that’s who I am, I wish 15 year old vegetarian me, fence walking peanut butter eating piece of shit who REALLY didn’t do ANYTHING, it’s cool, like I was vegetarian so young and it took me so long to vegan. I wish someone would have told me “there’s something called vegan-ism, this is what you want to do” because my mindset was “I want to help animals BUT I’m still gonna eat dairy” ::laughs::. So I wish 15 year old me would have known what being vegan meant.

 

Jessica Zeigerman

Jessica Zeigerman

 

Date of Interview: September 6, 2016

Name: Jessica Zeigerman

Age: 36

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Location: Arlington, VA

If you were an underwater sea creature which one would you be?

I think I would be a bioluminescent jellyfish, because they’re so cool and mysterious. And they don’t really have any organs or anything. They’re also a lot smarter than they look. I kind of like that, the hidden intellect. And they’re pretty.

What are you passionate about?

Um, I guess it’s kind of hard to say… I don’t know if I have a specific thing. You know how people say that art is their specific passion or saving earth is their passion or something… I just try to do what makes me happy and that can be anything at any given time. I mean, I love to explore and I love learning. Whether I’m reading something or someone is telling me about themselves or about some historic fact or… anything. That’s what gets me. I think when I was growing up and going to school I don’t think I was really into learning. I mean, I got great grades, I was a really good student but I wasn’t really paying attention. I was there for the grade. And later on in life I think I realized that man… I should have taken more history classes, more philosophy classes. More, kind of, explore more. Instead of only learning what I needed to learn to get to the next level. I don’t feel like I’m missing out from not having a specific passion, but I’m a really passionate person in a different way.

What draws you to history?

That there’s so much of it. And it’s so interesting learning how our civilization and the human race has evolved. Just, learning how things were built and wondering why it took so long to create the technology that we have now. Because we had and still have the intellect, but why didn’t we have the means? Just so much, it’s so vast that you can get lost in it! It’s fascinating. I always wanted to know what it’s like to live in an era or century where the day to day was different. I know what my day to day is and I know what another average person’s day to day might look like but there’s so much in the past that’s untold.

What do you think of humanity now?

I think there is a lot of good in this world but it’s unfortunately overshadowed by the not so good. You know, I don’t know if the good people are the silent majority or what it is… I feel like maybe these days people are afraid to offend another person so they keep to themselves or…Or you have the reverse where people don’t care. And they just do the exact opposite. I like to think that everybody has some inherent good in them.

What are you most afraid of for yourself?

I always look to, or try to be happy. Or try to find happiness somewhere. So I guess I’m really afraid of not being able to find that. I think in the past few years, since I’ve been moving around quite a bit, and just getting older, I find that I’ve become more and more solitary. So I’ve been here for a couple years already and I don’t have to many friends here in town and I moved here without knowing anyone and this being a transient town in itself, it’s so hard to find a group of friends to really click with. And stay with. I guess I’m also a little bit afraid of being utterly alone.

What are your thoughts on relationships? Platonic, sexual or otherwise.

I think as you get older you get more set in your ways. So… I think that you also get more confident in yourself and you know yourself so you can say “to hell with the next person if they don’t like me”. I always say that to know me is to love me and if you don’t love me you probably don’t know me ::laughs::. So I mean, I love being in love, but with getting older I think you have a different idea of what you want. Like when you’re young you have all of these ideals, maybe touching on the way you were raised, whether you try to marry your parents or whomever you think is ideal. And when you get older you kind of get more confident and set in your ways and you want… a companion. You want someone to share things with. And I’ve always been more of an independent person anyways, so I don’t need to be rescued but I want somebody there. I want somebody there if I’m having a great time so we can share that experience. If I’m going through a bad phase I want someone to give me a really big hug and a kiss and tell me that “Everything will be alright. I’m here for you”. I think it’s something that goes along with friendships, you know, as I get older I want friends who know I have my quirks and my ways and weird tendencies but loves me anyway.

What is something that you feel accomplished with?

I hate to say my job, but for a really long time my job has been my primary focus. So I kind of look back at where I started from and I’ve come a long way. And I love what I do, and now I’m finally making a difference. Or so I feel, and I really feel like I’ve arrived. So I guess that’s something that I’m proud of. I’m also proud that I was able to leave home. I lived in Cleveland for over 30 years and I picked up and left, went to New England not knowing anybody, for a job opportunity. And I made it! I made it up there and moved down here and have made it here too, so I’m proud of finding success professionally but also personally, knowing that I can do it. I feel that much better, more confident in myself.

What do you wish you had known at 15?

Sooo many things ::laughs::. The small things are really small things. Just be yourself, and be happy. Don’t try to always please your parents if that isn’t making you happy. Don’t try to fit in if you don’t, there will always be people out there that you can fit in with. So like, don’t try to fit in with the wrong group of kids, if they don’t like you somebody else will, it’s okay! Just… take it easy. Take time to smell the roses. And take more history classes I guess! ::Laughs:: or art classes or something, just go explore, explore everything. Expand your horizons.

LU LU Canja

LU LU Canja

 

Date of Interview: August 29, 2016

Name: LU LU Canja

Age: 28

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Location: Washington, DC

If you were an underwater creature which one would you be?

A seahorse. Because the guys carry the babies ::laughs::.

Do you have feelings about having children?

I don’t know, even when I was dating guys I didn’t think I would carry the kid. Hence, the seahorse. It’s never to late to change your mind. I’m giving myself at least five more years, I would love to have kids. But I have a lot of nieces and nephews and… I dunno. Maybe.

What are you passionate about?

Definitely art. Definitely drawing, I appreciate all facets of art and I appreciate people that do it. Cuz it’s a lot of insight into their minds. Whenever I do a drawing and people see it at art shows they’ll ask, you know, what I was thinking when I drew it. And I wasn’t really thinking I just do it and then think of another idea and it becomes layers and layers of ideas. And just… I can get lost in it, there’s rarely ONE idea behind my stuff. I feel, whenever I see other peoples art, there’s… they started out with a basic idea and then it was organic and kept on changing and so I think it’s open. I never like to think to much about other people want it to be unless they have a really grand idea or concept. I think just doing it is enough. Getting it out there. And my family. I got a lot of nephews and nieces and they mean a lot to me. I don’t see them that often which sucks ’cause if it’s been awhile they’re that much taller and smarter and more vocal than before. I just want more time with my family. I’ve been in the delivery room for three out of five of them. The only reason I wasn’t there for the other two was because of work which really bummed me out. You can see a little bit of me in them… ’cause they’re so weird. They’re just… really amazing kids. Real fucking cute too.

When did you start creating work?

I had my first art show about three years ago. But I’ve been doing art, more so, ever since college. I used to draw in high school and got voted Most Artistic, which is so stupid or whatever, but I was excited by it. Kids used to pay me to draw stuff for them. Almost became a tattoo artist because of it, but I didn’t like the idea of people coming in wanting a Playboy Bunny and HAVING to do it. I like to have my own ideas and doing those. I think it’s hard to be a professional artist. Everybody wants something they can’t put down or draw on paper. And it’s our job to try and do it without having their input. I’d rather just do what I want to do without anyone else, I’m such an asshole. I don’t like being told what to do. They sign checks though… They hire you… gotta do their shit.

Is being in control of your life important?

Yes. Otherwise I would just feel lost and kinda crazy up in my head. I’m very… what did my girlfriend call me… she said I’m the most cautious free spirit that she’s ever met and my response is, “How does that make any sense!?” I’m very cautious. Very organized. She thinks I’m free spirited because I’ll change my appearance, but that’s not really hard. And I’m cautious in the sense that I’m very calculating in my next step. And for that, I don’t know. It’s like being an artist and very aware of the moves you’re making. It doesn’t make any sense to me. My friends who are artists who want to go big and go places always think about their next step. And it’s very hard to do that because I don’t know what I want my next step to be. Which makes me crazy. Like I want to move somewhere, but I don’t know where. I want to do this, but I don’t know how. I just make myself crazy.

What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment?

I don’t think I’ve achieved that yet. I’m still waiting for that big lightning bolt to strike me, and I think it will, one day. Just got some work to do.

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