Thursday, December 30, 2004
beginning with five, from someone...
1. food that you love that is far far away:
oh man. tom kar guy from Surin Thai in atlanta. linguine with pesto from that italian place in coral gables - Cafe Itallia? just about anything from that southwestern fusion place in atlanta, out on cheshire bridge... Sunset Cafe? Sunset Grill?
2. what are you doing tonight?
coughing. listening to Liam cough. making and drinking lots of tea. trying to make Nash & Liam and my own self feel better. watching napoleon dynamite.
3. and for new year's?
ha, more of the same! topped off by watching the fireworks from my window, unless I fall asleep.
4. and this weekend?
I foresee continued recuperation. I'll go to work on sunday morning, and then settle in for 24 hours of dread until my monday morning dental appointment.
5. happy new year's!
right back atcha
Monday, December 27, 2004
Actualized type: ENTJ
(who you are)
ENTJ - "Field Marshall". The basic driving force and need is to lead. Tend to seek a position of responsibility and enjoys being an executive. 1.8% of total population.
(who you prefer to be)
ENTJ - "Field Marshall". The basic driving force and need is to lead. Tend to seek a position of responsibility and enjoys being an executive. 1.8% of total population.
INTP - "Architect". Greatest precision in thought and language. Can readily discern contradictions and inconsistencies. The world exists primarily to be understood. 3.3% of total population.
Take Jung Explorer Test
personality tests by similarminds.com
Sunday, December 26, 2004
wow. I mean, you know? the snow? in new orleans? absolutely amazing. the snow in mississippi was amazing enough but here, in this city, it's so rare as to be somewhat miraculous and I'm very, very happy that I got to be part of it.
when I called a friend on the drive home from mississippi on the 24th, to report the snow, she was all, well, here in FLA it's 82 and lovely...
but I don't like 82. I don't want 82. 82 is not my lovely. snow! in new orleans! gorgeous. I wouldn't miss it for the world.
anyway. things are all okay. yesterday was a somewhat perfect day. ate chocolate, watched the sleet, saw meet the fockers (dustin! barbra! ha ha ha!), watched the sleety-snow, ate chinese food, watched and frolicked in the really, truly, fat snow, photographed the kids and their snowman, drank rum, read, slept...
the previous evening was okay, too. my mother dug out and gave to my kids two of the little vests knitted for my brother by my grandma, and although I didn't get any pictures I at least got to enjoy seeing them in them, all fancy for christmas eve and it was sweet.
now it's catch up week. not now, but tomorrow. bills to pay, calendars to mail, packages to assemble.
happy birthday to henry miller.
Tuesday, December 14, 2004
(ganked from the writer's almanac)
It's the birthday of novelist and short story writer Shirley Jackson, born in San Francisco (1919). She grew up shy and awkward in California and never got along with her glamorous mother. So she married a literature professor and moved as far away from California as she could, to a small town in Vermont, where she raised four children.
She was a very eccentric woman. For most of her life, she heard voices and music that no one else could hear, and she believed that she was psychic. She kept half a dozen cats in her house and she said they often leapt up on her shoulder and whispered poems in her ear. She read dozens of books about witchcraft, and claimed that she had once used a voodoo doll to break a man's leg.
The people in her town talked about her behind her back, calling her a communist and atheist and a witch. Neighbors said the house was full of monstrous dust balls, and the children always had dirty tangled hair. She felt as though everyone in town was watching her and judging her, and she began to dread running into people at the local grocery store.
One spring afternoon, she returned from her daily errands and sat down to write a short story about a village where one person is chosen by lottery to be stoned to death every year. And that was "The Lottery," the short story that would make her name. She finished it in two hours and sent it off to the New Yorker magazine. When it was published there in 1948, more than four hundred readers wrote to the magazine demanding to know what the story meant, or asking to cancel their subscriptions because they were so disturbed.
Jackson was always proud that the white supremacist government of South Africa had banned "The Lottery," because she felt that they, at least, understood the story.
Even though "The Lottery" made her famous, she still struggled to find time to write while raising four children. She once said, "Fifty percent of my life was spent washing and dressing the children, cooking, [cleaning] and mending." But she loved to inspire her children's imagination. One night, during a fierce thunderstorm, she took all the children out to the front porch and encouraged them to roar back at the thunder.
She eventually wrote two best-selling memoirs about the experience of parenting, Life Among the Savages (1953) and Raising Demons (1957). She also wrote horror novels such as The Haunting of Hill House (1959) and We Have Always Lived in the Castle (1962).
Shirley Jackson said, "I tell myself stories all day long. I have managed to weave a fairy-tale of infinite complexity around the inanimate objects in my house... No one in my family is surprised to find me putting the waffle iron away on a different shelf because...it has quarreled with the toaster... It looks kind of crazy, of course. But it does take the edge off cold reality."
She also said, "[Writing is] a way of making daily life into a wonderfully unusual thing instead of a grind."
Monday, December 13, 2004
Sunday, December 12, 2004
yesterday was long, long, long. my big plans for a bonfire party were foiled by the inexplicably hard (for me) to discover news that the algiers bonfire was actually last night, not next saturday. so all day, the kids and I went from one festive event to another: the fair at church, a friend's going away party, and then the bonfire. it was too much.
but the bonfire was cool - I mean, it's a really big fire, what's not to love? right after they light it, papa noel comes riding up on a boat. I have to say, I got a little teary when my kids started jumping up and down screaming for santa. as proud as I was when three year old Nash referred to mr. claus as "that christmas guy" - that's how touched I am when they get all psyched for santa. it's a trade off. I mean, if the life and adventures of santa claus didn't exist I might not have been able to buy in, but what the hey. santa was part of my atheist childhood and we really, really enjoyed him. it feels okay for him to be a part of my children's atheist-uu-paganesque upbringing, too.
I was relieved to hear Liam ask santa for a bionicle and not for a chameleon or a puppy, which were included on his earlier lists. I didn't catch any of Nash's conversation with the man.
I got my 2005 edition of yo mama's daybook in the mail today and damn, it's beautiful, the cover is black and red. I am looking through, filling in birthdays and road trips...
tuesday I will pick up the 2005 mama calendars, and they will be beautiful, too, although in black and white.
I love to mind the days!
Friday, December 10, 2004
so I've started my weird month of watching holiday themed/related movies. the other day we watched 8 crazy nights (ugh), and last night it was the shop around the corner ( lovely!) and then, after the kids were alseep, bad santa (great although with a dose of heaviness that I wasn't expecting). next will be the rugrats chanukah special! which is the only rugrats thing that I've ever enjoyed. aside from the watches, I mean. and then the cartoon network holiday dvd. watching the johnny bravo christmas episode has emerged as a holiday tradition for the kids and me over the past three years. it's amazing!
I have so far been unable to secure a copy of emmet otter's jug band christmas. this is devastating. I'm also looking for the pee wee's playhouse christmas special. no luck.
last night I watched hi life, another seasonal selection that I found by searching for films with "christmas" in the description... which makes me feel like the biggest of weirdoes... but I loved it, it starred some of my favorite people. watching campbell scott I realized he is who I wish had been the male lead in eternal sunshine. by the same token I'd have cast julie delpy in shakespeare in love.
we also celebrated last night by baking the season's first chocolate chip cookies. it was my first experiment with earth balance shortening: good, but a little more dense than crisco cookies. it's harder to stir and has a little bit of a smell before baking. but no trans fats! hey!
I'm looking up recipes for body scrubs and other stuff that I can make for gifts. brown sugar scrubs with ginger or vanilla. I'm into it.
Thursday, December 09, 2004
Friday, December 03, 2004
You are a WRDL--Wacky Rational Destructive Leader. This makes you a Enemy of the State.
You are charismatic and winning and a very dangerous enemy. You favor justice over compassion, and would almost rather see your opponent fail than you succeed.
You impact the lives of those around you more than any other personality. People remember your name and respect you. You are a tremendous amount of fun to be around and astonishing to watch. You are generally abstinent in your habits, and you like things tidy and ordered.
When picking teams, it is smartest for others to pick yours.
Of the 63295 people who have taken this quiz since tracking began (8/17/2004), 1.5 % are this type.
Monday, November 15, 2004
the first time I made the calendar, it was november, 2000, and I laid it out on my living room floor while listening to "red hot & blue" over and over and over again. this was in mississippi, in an ugly, ranch style house. the kids were asleep in our bedroom. when mbd got home I got him to lay out the recipe page for me.
the second time, it was on the living/bedroom room floor of our little shotgun double on pacific avenue, with the kids asleep in the bunkbeds behind me, the tv on all night long, and at five AM I watched that show, you know, with brett butler as a single mom? grace under fire! yep. before that I watched/listened to a couple of episodes of the nanny. it was cable-free livin.
the third time... I remember nothing in particular about layout. I know I did it upstairs on my bedroom floor, the big house where we live now, the kids asleep in the bunkbeds, I'll bet I had the tv on. cable.
last year, the fourth time, I said to myself, damn, I'm not gonna kill my back with that, I'm doing it downstairs on the table, and besides, mbd's sister was staying with us and during the cold snap we had her and her baby as well as my kids and me sleeping in the upstairs bedroom because downstairs doesn't really get any of the heat, doesn't keep it anyway. and I did it in two nights. I tried to do it in one and felt like a big sissy for not being able to. I listened to music and I can't remember what. I was freezing.
this year I'm sure I'll do some of each - table and floor. I'll have the house to myself for 48 hours! so I won't feel all panicky to get it done before the kids wake up. when I get that wave of self-loathing at the 11th hour and feel like, oh god, how embarrassing, this is hideous and I'm a joke and people will only buy it because they pity me, I'll just go to bed. I'll have so much time. I hope, I hope, I hope that this all works out.
I need to lay in the snacks. and the dvds.
Friday, November 05, 2004
in the interest of channeling my feelings about the election into something constructive, I am working on making this year's mama calendar into an expression of active resistance.
you may have already seen my call for submissions (and orders!) around the web, but I am passing it on again, and adding a special request. this will be the first of my calendars with a defined theme beyond celebrating progressive mamas & their kin. I want to place an emphasis on parents as activists, and all of the ways that that plays out, with words and picures relating to what it means to be an activist parent, what it means to build a family-inclusive radical movement (thanks to M*A*M*A for that phrasing), and all of the ways that parenthood informs our activism and vice versa.
so, yes, as always I want your beautiful pictures of children & families at protests but I want to go beyond, that, too, I want to dig deeper and I want to include numerous resource lists, I want the calendar to function as a calendar, yes, and a thing of beauty but also a guide for functioning in a year of resistance (not the first and not the last, but one of many). I am thinking of stories and images of youth activism, for example, and of images and stories of and from the M*A*M*A collective in NYC. these are just jumping off places.
the standard call for submissions is here, along with complete ordering information and photos from last year's edition. let me know how you can help give this project shape, and please do pass this around.
Wednesday, November 03, 2004
Monday, October 25, 2004
at the last minute, nash has chosen to be pee wee herman for halloween! I'm so proud. we got him a grey suit and white shirt... he still needs a red bowtie and what, white keds? and I want to make the helmet somehow...
he's going to walk his bike as a prop.
I am thinking posession of a digital camera should be required for admission to this halloween soiree I'm throwing.
meanwhile, we got liam a good hat and eyepatch for his captain hook. not that I've ever seen the captain with an eyepatch, but he wants one. he has this great cloth hook, I think it actually came from a happy meal last year when the new peter pan came out. we have an assortment of piratey things with which to embellish him.
and me, well, I had this moment of I'll be Miss Yvonne after all! or Dottie! but I couldn't find the right things for either of those ladies, so I'm kinda stuck with my cowgirl thing. which is FINE. I need a gunbelt.
Wednesday, October 13, 2004
Nash, while eating his breakfast, has lined up my five how to get stupid white men out of office bookmarks in a row and is reading/singing them over and over again, line by line, as in
HOW to get HOW to get HOW to get HOW to get HOW to get
stupid white MEN! stupid white MEN! stupid white MEN! stupid white MEN! stupid white MEN!
out of offfffffice, out of offffice, out of offfffice, out of offfffice, out of offfffffice...
it's pretty amazing.
I have to go to the bank, the grocery store, and to work. to My Office. week before last I spent an entire day reconfiguring my office and it's lovely. I got my new computer in there and arranged things in such a way that there is a lot of open space for coming in and browsing the bookshelves, space for sitting and working at a table and desk, and then, back in the corner, a cozy little cubbyhole for me to sit and use the computer, surrounded by plants. it's very me. it just needs a paint job. well, and a new floor. but I can't keep waiting around for these things.
Thursday, October 07, 2004
a pixies show and thai food? well, yeah...
I am Indie Girl
Click on the picture below to read more:
liam woke me up by singing the bass line to 7 nation army.
then he said something hilarious that I forgot as soon as I fell back to sleep.
whatever it was, it reminded me of the funniest thing nash ever said to me, it was a couple of years ago,
one day when we got on the ferry on a hot, hot day, and we walked toward the part with the air conditioning
and he said, "yeah, let's go in to the condish." the condish! cracked me right up.yesterday we were listening
to bob marley in the car and nash was belting out jammin, the first song he ever sang, and I was reminiscing
(but not out loud) about how when he was two he sang it, "FUCKshawahwahwah!"
the first song that liam sang was tony's theme.
I need a baby book that records these things!
right now they're playing the games on the harry potter chamber of secrets dvd.
it's stormy and grey out, just like I like it.
You are Fluffy Mackerel Pudding!! You somehow
manage to combine seafood and dessert into your
wonderfully fluffy world. We should all be as
tolerant of New Taste Sensations. And of
What Weight Watchers recipe card from 1974 are you?
brought to you by quizilla
Saturday, October 02, 2004
remember that song? here's some news for you:
7th ANNUAL NEW ORLEANS DYKE MARCH!
Friday October 8th, 2004
Kicking off New Orleans 25th Annual Pridefest Celebration!
7pm - PRE-MARCH RALLY - Jackson Square in the French Quarter, corner of St. Ann and Chartres Streets.
Drumming by Sisterbeat, fire performances, mixing and mingling!
8pm - MARCH - Steps off from Jackson Square at 8pm sharp and routes through the French Quarter
ending at One Eyed Jacks at 615 Toulouse St.
9pm - DYKESTRAVAGANZA: DYKE MARCH AFTER PARTY, One Eyed Jacks (615 Toulouse Street).
5 DJs - St. Blaize (Dallas, TX), 4renZic (NOLA), Beat Grrl (NOLA), Mags (NOLA), and Missy (Biloxi, MS)!
Go-Go Dancers, Kissing Booth, roving Drag Kings and who knows what else!
$2-20 sliding scale donation at the door (no dyke turned away for lack of funds).
18 and over. Don't miss the biggest dyke party of the year!
For further info and updates on all Dyke March events, visit www.dykemarchnola.com.
AND...we had so much fun last week that we're doing it again:Dyke-It-Yourself! Part Two!
Come make your own t-shirt or other wearable item for the New Orleans Dyke March at a D.I.Y.
T-Shirt Making Party! Bring your own T's, tanks, button-downs or other customizable clothing - whatever
you want - and we'll provide supplies for you to speak your mind!! Stencils, iron-on letters, puff paint, markers,
glitter - maybe even a Bedazzler! - and other fun crafty stuff to make yourself stand out in a crowd!! We'll also have
supplies to make signs/posters and noisemakers for use at the march.(If you have spare cans or bottles - plastic or
aluminum - sitting around the house, bring 'em to make noisemakers!)Surely with the state of our country and politics
today, and with the election right around the corner, you have something to say!! So come say it!!! Speak your mind!
Sunday (tomorrow), October 3rd, 2004
Lesbian and Gay Community Center of New Orleans
2114 Decatur Street in the Marigny (back room/courtyard)
3 -5pm after Marshal Training (which is at 2pm)
more info: http://www.dykemarchnola.com
Sunday, September 26, 2004
scratchy throat, achey head, sniffly nose.
so, I am missing all this good stuff:
diy dyke march t-shirt making party/le tigre listening party!
league of pissed off voters meeting!
caribbean dinner/dance fest at the uu church!
I'm cranky and annoyed.
on friday, we spent time with the kids around the corner,
my very kind neighbors who will be taking nash & liam
overnight while I get my groove back at the dyke march,
and we were taking about how much we kinda wish that
we were moving to seattle. except that I do love it here.
and the way that I love seattle is kinda stupid, I mean, it
was 1986 the one and only time I was there, but I stayed
for nearly a week and I loved it, god, it just amazed me,
that place. on the other hand, 1986 me thought it'd be
heaven to live in a crusty apartment in the center of little
five points in atlanta so, who knows... I'd be into having
yantra & sal for my neighbors, though, as well as rachel &
her collection of kids.
and of course, the way that I love new
orleans is kinda stupid, too. or maybe it's just that love is kinda
stupid. blind stupid. selectively blind.
meanwhile, I made this quiz, complete with typos. the cells and stuff aren't workimg, but you can cut & paste it into wherever you want to put it I guess.:
Friday, September 10, 2004
You're a punk rock mommy! DIY is probably your
motto, because you're a punk mama at heart.
Your kids are getting your independent spirit
and guts, and learning to solve problems
themselves. You love it when they show their
independence, even when it's breaking your
What kind of a freaky mother are you?
Thursday, September 09, 2004
liam woke up at 7 with a bad dream that he didn't want to talk about.
then he asked me to bring him some cheese, saying, "I do things for you, why can't you do something for me?"
I don't know where that's coming from; I promise I never say that.
I said, "hmmm, what about when I carried you in my belly for nine months and then nursed you for two years?"
this morning was the first (but probably not the last) time I've played that card.
he gave a heavy sigh.
"not things you did for me when I was a baby, those things aren't what I'm talking about.
what about when we were at rowe camp, you didn't do anything for me at rowe camp, ever.
now can I have some cheese?"
in a word, no.
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
with harmonica accompaniment and it went:
where are you
the train is coming
he was two and a half. it was late november. in four months time he had
gained a baby brother, seen me hospitalized twice (I walked in to give
birth but I was carried off on a stretcher when the pancreatitis struck me
down six weeks later), and moved away from home to stay with my parents
in mississippi. at my parents' house, he'd pace circles into the floor, playing
his harmonica while I sat and nursed the baby. when the train came by,
every few hours, he'd lean out the open window and count the cars.
where are you
the train is coming
Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Illinois Central Monday morning rail
Fifteen cars and fifteen restless riders,
Three conductors and twenty-five sacks of mail.
All along the southbound odyssey
The train pulls out at KankakeeRolls
along past houses, farms and fields.
Passin' trains that have no names,
Freight yards full of old black men
And the graveyards of the rusted automobiles.
when I got on board yesterday evening in chicago at 8 PM (spot on time), I had $4, half of a chicken burrito, a bottle of water & two kashi go lean bars, one unread book, several already or mostly read books & zines, lotsa dirty clothes, extremely dirty hair, smelly feet, and four hours of sleep under my belt. which is not enough for me. sleep, that is.
Good morning America how are you?
Don't you know me I'm your native son,
I'm the train they call The City of New Orleans,
I'll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.
I don't regret sitting up late sunday night talking with sal & yantra, at all. spending time with them was the highlight of my weekend, even if I did forget to say thanks for dinner (thanks for dinner, lady mamas). I don't regret my decision to take a 7 AM bus to chicago on monday morning instead of a sunday evening free ride. coming all that way, I needed that extra time with friends to make the trip worthwhile. I had imagined, though, that I'd be able to sleep on the bus trip. how was I to know that I'd wind up with two tedious woman-girls sitting behind me, on their way to some fucking theater camp in madison and singing the whole damn way. fucking fuckers.
Dealin' card games with the old men in the club car.
Penny a point ain't no one keepin' score.
Pass the paper bag that holds the bottle
Feel the wheels rumblin' 'neath the floor.
And the sons of pullman porters
And the sons of engineers
Ride their father's magic carpets made of steel.
Mothers with their babes asleep
Are rockin' to the gentle beat
And the rhythm of the rails is all they feel.
I went to sleep early, before midnight, and even though I was hungry, I forgot to finish that burrito. I finished ariel gore's new book as soon as I got on, and then started tony hillerman's second.on the ride up I was so cold and uncomfortable that I couldn't sleep more than a few miserable hours. I kept dreaming about being locked out in the snow.on the way back, it was just as cold but I was more tired. I wore two t-shirts (1 long sleeved), one button down shirt and a sweater, jeans, socks, shoes, and I was still freezing. I pulled out a long skirt from my bag and used it as a short blanket, but my only good sleep came once the sun came up and warned me through the window.
Good morning America how are you?
Don't you know me I'm your native son,
I'm the train they call The City of New Orleans,
I'll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.
at 10 AM, just after I'd used the toilet, brushed my teeth, run some water through my hair, used face wipes on my face and feet (!), and put on clean socks, I went into the lounge and watched Spiderman. what a lot of killing.all the toddlers in the lounge (3) ragefully resisted sleep. and I found their carrying on strangely soothing.I missed my kids.
Nighttime on The City of New Orleans,
Changing cars in Memphis, Tennessee.
Half way home, we'll be there by morning
Through the Mississippi darkness
Rolling down to the sea.
And all the towns and people seem
To fade into a bad dream
And the steel rails still ain't heard the news.
The conductor sings his song again,
The passengers will please refrain
This train's got the disappearing railroad blues.
I hate to say it but I am kind of over the train right now. trained out. if I had it to do over, I'd totally fly to minneapolis. I'd still take my summer's other two train trips... assuming all goes well on friday when we get on board bound for DC.I have relished the peace and opportunity to read on my previous child-free train trips, but this time I was uncomfortable and the time dragged. I could not turn my brain off - I was either worrying about all of the things I have to accomplish in three days time when I get home, how I'll manage the DC train trip, how my mama gathering workshops would go (on the way up), or (on the way down) reliving every word I said during the weekend and wishing I'd been, depending on the situation, smarter, clearer, kinder, more concise, or, sometimes, just completely, wisely silent.
Good night, America, how are you?
Don't you know me I'm your native son,
I'm the train they call The City of New Orleans,
I'll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.
we got in on time at 3:30. liam and nash both ran to hug me and be kissed, let me smell their hair and hold them tight. they're bickering and being monstrous and I don't give much of a fuck. I have bathed. I went to see rosana for a few hours. I am exhausted. I have much more to say positive & negative, about the weekend, but this is it for now.I feel pretty good.
(this is from tuesday night)
Thursday, July 08, 2004
I should be writing and I am so not feeling it. I want to just tell all my stuff into the tape recorder and send that out to the world, in an envelope with a few photos.
meanwhile, I enjoyed taking this:
Which Extremity of the World Are You?
From the towering colossi at Rum and Monkey.
Tuesday, July 06, 2004
Nash at venice beach on wednesday, june 23
and this is Liam aquiescing to a photo with our friend Dorie
the beach itself was windy and I was freezing.
a week later, we went to the labrea tar pits.
this is my favorite store name ever: ethical drugs
Monday, July 05, 2004
we got into the new orleans station at ten til 8 this morning. we'd been scheduled to arrive at 8:30 last night. I'm exhausted from a night of fitful half-sleep, afraid we might miss our stop and wake up in orlando. at 3, I had to get up and rescue my glasses from inside the workings of the bed/chair. I'm lucky they weren't mangled.
I can't really say much about the trip until I've had some rest. and a high quality shower. I had a short one first thing, but I couldn't escape from the kids long enough to get serious and wash my hair. I still have beach hair. stiff.
I'm not leaving the house today unless it catches fire. the kids and I just watch pirates of the caribbean.
I wish I had some pad thai. or flautas. a gyro would be nice.
Thursday, July 01, 2004
You are an SEDL--Sober Emotional Destructive Leader. This makes you a dictator. You prefer to control situations, and lack of control makes you physically sick. You feel have responsibility for everyone's welfare, and that you will be blamed when things go wrong. Things do go wrong, and you take it harder than you should.
You rely on the validation and support of others, but you have a secret distrust for people and distaste for their habits and weaknesses that make you keep your distance from them. This makes you very difficult to be with romantically. Still, a level-headed peacemaker can keep you balanced.
Despite your fierce temper and general hot-bloodedness, you have a soft spot for animals and a surprising passion for the arts. Sometimes you would almost rather live by your wits in the wilderness somewhere, if you could bring your books and your sketchbook.
You also have a strange, undeniable sexiness to you. You may go insane.
we left long beach (where we'd been attending the uu general assembly) on tuesday afternoon and are back with our amazing, kind, generous hosts in the city.
we were scheduled to get on our train last night, but get this: due to a freight train collision and derailment in texas, my train has been cancelled. har, har. what a capital T trip this is/has been/will continue to be. after a whole day of limbo (which I hated - I really don't enjoy limbo), we are booked onto the friday noght train with high hopes of no further amtrak snafu action. if all reasonable amtrak options (reasonable meaning a)not the fucking bus and b) getting us home by sunday) had failed us, we would have got our money back and got on a plane. which I didn't want. which I fully admit that I fear, even though I know all of the everything about statistics and safety and yada yada yada.
meanwhile, my mother and my official Oldest Old Friend (that is to say, the person I've known longest, who is not a blood relative, and who is still my friend)(we've been friends since 1982 and although there was a period of 1996-7 when we were totally NOT friends, we're friends now I think it still counts), mark, rented a car yesterday and we set off with our friend jon for roscoe's chicken and waffles to eat, take pictures, buy tacky souvenirs and such.
I'm thinking (since I never did manage to get into the cybercafe in long beach) that I haven't posted about my roscoe's obsession. it's an offshoot of my john cusack obsession. if you don't know what I'm talking about, get thee a copy of tapeheads and watch it, now.
liam and I ate at roscoe's in long beach on sunday, and it was extra tasty, and just confirmed my need to go the original location in LA and tourist it up. alas, the wait for lunch yesterday was an hour at least, and we were mighty hungry, so we took a picture, bought t-shirts and then drove over to el conquistador on sunset to eat. which was excellent and I even a margartita - one which has been proclaimed the best in los angeles, no less.
I'll talk more about this later, but I have to say, before running off to attack my inbox, my time in long beach was really good and rewarding and meaningful and fun and I owe it all to kateadelle and her gorgeous partner, for taking such excellent care of my kids so that I could get into the program without guilt or worry. you two are the best.
this whole trip has been particularly successful in terms of, you know, F-U-N for me and the kids, and it's all due to good friends and kind people: sonja, dorie, alecia, kate, all of my rowe camp sweethearts, nash & liam's "uncles" jon & mark, everybody... big, big thanks and love to all of y'all.
today: sonja has this painting up on her site right now (collage-o-scope), "sonic nurse," it makes me so happy.
last night jeff said, if you're going to be here for two more days, we've got to get you out of the house to see the world. ha. even before I had children, I've always been the kind of houseguest who amazes my hosts with my level of sloth. I need downtime, now more than ever. but we will go out today, to the labrea tar pits (my strongest association of which comes from that scene in the forbidden zone) and the free children's space museum and the art museum and so on and so on.
nash and charlie are still loving on each other like mad. I have this fantasy of the two of them going to sleep away camp together next year. next year and for many years to come. I'm like, planning their wedding and everything.
each of them has gotten into real live reading this summer via their pokemon obsession. which is hilarious and amazing and weird and okay, I guess.
liam is having a good time telling stories to our hosts, but he has a hard time with feeling left out of the nash-charlie coupling. and he often expresses that with aggresion. which is hard to respond to in a patient, compassionate and constructive manner. jeff & sonja manage to, though. their parenting is amazing. it's like, I know how to say the words but they engage in the empathetic (is it empathetic or empathic?) response so much more sincerely and thoughtfully than I do, and the kids really feel that. I'm trying to soak up their calm.
last night we all turned in early - early compared to what we have been doing. around 10 for the 6-7 year olds, 11 for mighty, energetic, tenacious liam and my weary self.
I dreamed complicated, layered tales of crushes and longing and camp directing and office work. and snow.
Wednesday, June 23, 2004
greetings from paradise,
also known as sonja's house in LA. after three days of amtrak misadventures, I feel like I'm at some sort of spa, with beautifully appointed rooms, delicious food, and a chance to rest, get cleaned up, wash some clothes...
the kids were playing in the yard at 8 AM, I had to coerce them in to get them bathed and fed. now they're transfixed in front of bedknobs & broomsticks, I movie I fell asleep in front of as a small child in a movie theater.
it's funny, I have taken the crescent (new york - new orleans) several times - at least 5 - and it runs on time. little did I know that the sunset (orlando-los angeles) is renowned for running 3-9 hours late. we left new orleans (after a fun filled afternoon at the station) a little before 9 PM, so at that point it was running a little over 8 hours behind, and things did not improve as we moved through the great state of texas. in a game of catch up that I don't entirely understand, the train terminated and turned around in tucson and we were placed on buses for the final nine hours of our journey.
we will be getting some money back, but still, damn. I loathe the bus. I know, jonathon richmann would say I should be more community minded, but I have spent so much time on greyhound buses in my life and I'm beyond over it. the train is mighty communal anyhow. and I love the train. it's cozy, soothing, romantic, fun. and the food is pretty good. I feel safe on the train. I do not feel safe on the bus. at all. and I'm not talking about the people on the bus. I'm talking death on the highway. we're flying down these mountain roads and our driver looked like he was nodding off. man, fuck the bus.
our bus ride was long. the desert is scary and I do not like it. at all. dry heat scares me and I do not like it. at all. I'll take my sauna, you keep your oven. when we stopped to eat (garbage) in blythe, ca., I felt like my eyeballs were being baked. before that we had a stop in the phoenix bus station. fuck phoenix, man, I've seen enough of that place.
we got into the (very beautiful) LA amtrak station and then spent two hours wrangling for our luggage. one of the buses had broken down in the desert (my fear!) and it was the one carrying our bags. I was wiped out. I was walking around the station thinking, man, fuck california. I mean, seeing friends is all to the good but beyond that, who needs this place, I'm sick of it already.
sonja was patient and soothing. liam, who had been up since 5 AM central time, fell asleep as soon as we buckled him into his carseat and started driving. it was about midnight central time at that point. nash bunked down in charlie's playroom and would have played til he dropped if I hadn't insisted that he give lying down a try. I had an excellent shower and then crawled into my big, soft bed.
liam woke me at 6 california time, which means that so far he is sticking to his usual hours. and a big fuck you to that. nash slept til about 7:30 california time. I feel like I've been up forever. the kids are too excited to eat much so far, they couldn't wait for charlie to wake up and play with them. they've eaten half a doughnut each and a handful of strawberries so a crash is imminent. me, I've had the best yogurt ever, a cappucino, emergenC and some cold fried chicken. reminds me of breakfasts in the USSR. but I'm sleepy, my head hurts. it's been a long time since I've had to adjust to pacific time - three years I guess.
later, the kids and I will stroll out to check the neighborhood and get some lunch out. I think tomorrow we'll go to the farmer's market, but for today I want to take a day off from mass transit.
sonja & jeff are so wonderful, I don't know what else to say about that. we had the best time hanging around with them in portland three years ago and it's nice to be on their turf. this is the first time I've been to a friend's house and been like, no, really, this is 100% my dream house. it's exactly the sort of house I pine for and they've done exactly the sort of stuff I'd do with it. it's very similar to an old florida-new orleans sort of place in many ways. the windows, so many windows, beautiful old windows.
I'm waiting for it to be late enough for me to reasonably call dorie. I hope I can see nina today! I'm wearing my recently unearthed duran duran t-shirt from 1984, so someone has to see me.
sore throat, stuffy nose.
much as I want to see the LA farmer's market and am aware that seeing as how I haven't been here in 16 years, who the hell knows when I'll return, I'm choosing not to drag my kids around on a cranky outing this afternoon. yesterday's short outing was cranky enough. we walked down to larchmont and got ice cream. people walk faster here than in new orleans, and in a strangely purposeful way considering that all they are doing is shopping. people don't smile back at you when you pass them on the street. things seem unnervingly clean. the shops on larchmont reminded me of a squeaky clean version of magazine street. or a more busy, moneyed feeling main street in northhampton. or endless variations, probably, on any quaint shopping oriented strip in any old american city.
so we got ice cream, which was the lure I used to get the kids to agree to leave the house. they love the house and who wouldn't? they never want to leave. they've been up and playing since 7:30 pacific time and now are watching a magic schoolbus video.
after ice cream, we went into a little store and bought small toys - bubbles, a sticky yo-yo ball, a magnetic checkers set for the trip home. then the children waited impaitently while I look through sets of sparkly-mesh sandals for a black or red pair in my size (7). no dice. ah, but I'm forgetting: just prior to going in the little store with toys in the back section, we had an unfortunate liam running away incident. my kids are very savvy when it comes to minding the street in our own neighborhood, and around the french quarter and the surrounding neighborhoods. the whole feel is different here. and the people in cars drive faster that folks at home. the genral vibe is pretty scary for this pedestrian. and liam running off to the end of the block like he is allowed to do at home was infuriating.
we did have a possible celebrity sighting: michael rappaport or his doppelganger, buying small toys with two lovely young children, and later having a bagel. he looked tired and sad. cheer up, dick ritchie. I'll always love you.
liam woke me at some unknown hour, crying and angry because I'd put him on the floor to sleep. I pulled him into maceo's little bed with me and wrapped him up in the blanket, held him tight and he went back to sleep.
this morning he said, I can't sleep without you, and I said, well, I wasn't far away, and he said, DUUUUUH! and I said, what does that mean? and he tossed his hair, crossed his arms, looked away and said, don't talk to me right now...
yesterday I felt pretty crappy all day, exhausted, sore throat. I huddled in a chair out in the yard while the kids played, and then I herded them back in so that I could nap while they watched the rescuers. post-nap, we all snacked on pita chips and hummus and then went back outside for playing, playing and huddling, huddling. I am freezing in the shade here.
now we are with dorie in santa monica, in her cozy little place. liam's wake up time has progressed, from 6 on our first day in california, to 7:30 and now 8. not bad. he and nash are enjoying talking with dorie, I think she meets nash's standards of punk rock.
today we need to go find a photobooth, a beach, groceries for our hotel room in long beach. tomorrow, long beach - gack!
I am having my now annual angst that, thanks to my help with hiring, my mother's camp staff is made up of several of my very favorite far flung folks, and they are busy and far away and I'll never get to hang out with them. I want to see them, now. it's not gonna happen.
meanwhile, the long lost hip mama friends reunion is still a big success. being with dorie again after three years is lovely, although I'm sure she's getting sick of my detailed accounting of the time I went to the first lollapolooza, tripping, hot and mostly miserable.
invite me to your house, I'll come, I'll skulk, I'll drink all the juice, I'll talk your ear off.
Friday, June 18, 2004
Thursday, June 17, 2004
last night I packed all of the children's clothes and did the preliminary sorting of my own.
I still have to pack
books, tapes, cds
blank cds for dorie
camera and film
leap pad, tape recorder, batteries, sound effect recording magnadoodle, harry potter uno cards, dora the explorer uno cards, I spy snap cards, notebooks, pens, pencils, crayons, maze books...
soap, calendars & zines for gifts
aside from packing, I have to
mail off bills and things owed to friends
consume all of the immediately perishable food in the house
get nash to and from kung fu class
give the kids a good scrubbing
... could that possibly be all?
I went to the bank already. to my doctor's appointment. washed all of the clothes. dyed my hair. bought my train tickets for july. made housing arrangements for camp. I owe my camp co-director a phone call, but that can wait for the train ride...
oh yeah, charge my cell phone!
we have to be at the station by 11. we have to leave the house by 10:30. I intend to bathe in the morning, so I'll set the alarm and we can have breakfast at home before we go. I will assemble the bulk of our stuff by the front door before going to bed tonight.
ah, this song is a triumph. "kid" by the pretenders. everyone needs this record.
Thursday, June 10, 2004
"so what do you do in new orleans?"
I have no smooth and ready answer. what I end up saying is something like this:
"uh... do? I mean, uh... mostly I'm with the kids, you know. that's work. especially because we're unschoolers. but I also work half time at the uu church. directing the sunday school. you know?"
(and then I generally am asked to elaborate, often with questions about what exactly uuism is, indicating to me that the asker is not actually interested in me and how I spend my time at all.)
I never say anything that resembles my day to day, which would sound more like,
"I try to keep my kids healthy as well as happy and/or engaged with the world by taking them places, reading to them, providing them with interesting stuff to work with, hear about, see, do; I try to find time to write each day; I read a lot and sometimes see movies; I put in twenty hours a week working with uu kids for pay; I try to make friends and/or find time to spend with my friends with and without the company of our children; I wish for things (a lover, a home of my own) and wonder how/if those wishes will come true; I neglect my old dog; I futz around online and talk to my friends; I grudgingly do the dishes only when the kitchen is piled high and hosting a family of fruitflies; I lay plans for future travels and projects; I live with daily trade-offs."
I find it interesting but sad that I still am not in a place where the factual statement, "I spend a lot of time working on my writing," comes easily out of my mouth.
speakers/presenters include ariel gore, bee lavender, jane evershed, marilyn wann, nina utne, trula breckenridge, maia rossini, anne elizabeth moore, freya manfred, janis keyser, anne gorrick, lli wilburn, deb morbeto, vikki law and many, many more... even me.
poke around the site for details, including a message board for rides, hotel info and other logistical details.
Tuesday, June 08, 2004
the imax was sold out so I went to a regular theater, a gigantic auditorium place with remarkably comfy seats and it was about half full. and I enjoyed the film, for what it was. love the weasley twins new do! and gary oldman makes a good sirius, although I still think johnny depp would have been the ideal choice.
I'm going to see harry potter at the imax tonight! er, unless it sells out. but probably, I am. yee haw!
I have so much to do, so much, so much, so much to do. mbd is out buying groceries and then we'll be babysitting and cooking for our friend with the new baby and then I'm going to the movies.
I am determined to spend nothing on take-out food between now and our departure. summertime gets expensive for me, what with the loss of income and all. more than half of my measly camp income is spent on childcare. which is totally worth it! more than worth it! but still. wow.
Thursday, June 03, 2004
but jonathon didn't play roadrunner last night, in fact, I've never heard him play roadrunner live. I wonder if that was song requested by the skinny girl to whom he said, no dear, I've only played that song once in the past thirty years and I'm not gonna play it tonight...
and then he launched right into pablo picasso. and he did that modern lovers song that talks about the old world and the new world. but he didn't play back in your life, my favorite song, or everyday clothes, my other favorite song, or chewing gum wrapper or fender stratocaster or even action packed or vincent van gogh or velvet underground or the beach, all staples of his atlanta bar shows in the early nineties.
and it could be that I'm just a crusty old curmudegeon, holding on to my early nineties as tight as I can.
the first time I ever saw him (it was february, 1990)he did this song that I'd never heard before and haven't heard since, that goes:
jonathon, jonathon, whaddaya want?
something something something and a croissant?
too much talkin goin on
can't be inside talkin
got to be outside rockin
I trust the reader understands that when I say "something something something" what I mean to convey is my lack of recollection of the actual words... and I have just been informed by cheryljill that the song in question is titled "cappucino bar." so put it on that mix cd you're brewing up for me, reader dear.
so once again I was up til 3. I seem to keep forgetting that we don't have a morning nanny around here. and now we're off, off to see my friend s. in the hospital, she had her baby boy yesterday. she wants reading material and candy.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
I went yesterday and saw super size me all by my lonesome.
I have to say I loved and hated it. I am constantly pissed and amazed at the inability of so many seemingly bright and creative folks to speak out against all that is evil about this culture of fast food and give me convenience or give me death and etc. without being hateful towards fat folks. homeboy skimmed right over some big issues - skinny middle school girls eating nothing but fries and soda for lunch, for example, and a comment about the diet industry being huge while pro-active attention to one's health is made difficult, but still he focuses a lot on the "obesity epidemic" business.
mcdonald's. when I was little, the closest mcdonald's was in downtown fort myers, 40 minutes from home, so we only went there now and then, and when we did, we'd squeeze the insides of the french fries out for my baby sister to eat. when we ate out, it was usually for chinese or pizza. or that mexican place near the beach. the split rail. I still recall their enchiladas.
when I was a starving teenager, I was all about subsisting on fries and a soda, or making one wendy's chicken sandwich last all day. in my teens and early twenties, it was a tradition for my friends and me to go to mcdonald's on new year's eve and gorge on fries. I'm not sure why. when I was 16, I ate at the mcdonald's in helsinki even though I was extremely embarrassed to do so, because all of the other restaurants in walking distance of our hotel were way out of my price range and it was hours until dinner. when I was 20, I ate at the mcdonald's on boston common once because I was so very over the painfully correct and critical group I had been stuck with for traveling companions, I was sick of their whining about food and so I went, I had a quarter pounder with cheese and I enjoyed the hell out of it.
watching the film nauseated me, though. I couldn't finish my popcorn. I came home and urged mbd to stop giving the kids chicken nugget happy meals. and I wish I had a live-in girlfriend who was a vegan chef, damn.
we went to whole foods this afternoon for some staples but also a few things for the trip to texas. so that we won't be stuck with so few non-junk options. nash asked me why healthy food is more expensive than unhealthy food. lately he is very concerned about everything - is it healthy? is it okay for me to eat some not healthy things as long as I've eaten some healthy things? I am torn between feeling like it's good for him to have an awareness of nutrition and worrying that I'm making him neurotic.
Friday, May 14, 2004
but, today we went to the aquarium and then toured a dredge vessel that's docked in the quarter. a great big ship, it was cool to go all the way to the top of it. we were stir crazy after so many rainy afternoons. well, the kids were. I just want to sleep. I want them to go to sleep so I can watch lost in translation.
I remember this rankin-bass animation from my childhood. I saw it on tv, just before reading the book.
Tuesday, May 11, 2004
my contacts are uncomfortable; I've been recycling the same pair since november.
yesterday I spent a ridiculous amount of time online, being unusually productive. I got major things accomplished for camp, for work, for my summer travels. I spent a lot of time on the amtrak website.
the kids and I now have a ride from DC to camp, so that we can take the train there instead of all the way to NY. this is excellent, because we had no good chance of a ride from NYC to camp, and the train trip from NY to albany was murder last year. so was the hour spent in penn station. to no longer have the fear of those experiences hanging over me, it's wonderful. I feel way less anxious about the summer in general.
BUT: I still need a roommate and a hotel room for long beach, and that's big, that's very big. I am trying to be hopeful about long beach but I fear that it may be the most difficult part of the summer. last year, boston sure was.
liam just woke up:
"I had a bad dream. a dragon ate me."
Thursday, May 06, 2004
my kingdom for a chiropractor. or a massage therapist. or whatever.
the kids are watching young frankenstein and eating chips and guac for dinner. we had a large meal at 4. this is the eating style I prefer.
it's unusual for me to blog more than once a day - I'm generally more of a once a week blogger - but today, I have to. I called up someone I'd met a few weeks ago at unschool group, well, we met online via a mutual friend, then met in person at unschool group for nash's birthday, and then made plan after plan to hang out... between her four kids and my two, something was always coming up to prevent our getting together.
last thursday, we finally met up and went to the aquarium, but everything was stacked against it being an enjoyable experience for us: there were at least four school groups having field trip days; three out of our six kids were irreparably cranky; and we encountered several pointlessly rude childless folks. my favorite of those encounters was the lady who announced with a scowl, as she walked past our group of howlers, "well, when you have too many, you can't keep them happy!" gee, thanks, ma'am. aren't you sweet.
our visit was cut short due to mass hysteria among the children, and today I realized a whole week had passed. I wanted to call her up to make sure that she knew I hadn't been scarred by the experience. the first thing she said was that she was surprised (relieved?) that she hadn't read about it in my blog!
nah, it wasn't that bad. I mean, it sucked! but I've been through just as bad. and at least it wasn't raining. and nobody puked. so there you go. we'll try again.
there is a gw bush coloring book exhibit at fair grinds (is it fair grind or fair grinds? anyhow, that coffeehouse by the fairgrounds) tomorrow night, but will I make it? probably not. and son del pantano is playing at the family friendly happy hour at the mermaid lounge, too. will I be there? highly unlikely.
in the past couple of weeks he stopped calling me "mom." for which I am thankful. I hate to be called mom, by anyone. mama is not so bad, but mom I dislike. or the dreaded mommmmmyyyyy. ugh. I grew up calling my parents by their names and nash has always called me by mine, except for the mum-mum-mah of babyhood, and then, at just under a year, his first nickname for me of whooo-zat, caused by his father pointing to me each time they came to pick me up from school, asking the baby, "who's that? who's that?" but when we moved here, liam was just turned two and, for all of us but mbd, it was our first experience with total immersion in mainstream culture via the busy neighborhood playground. on the playground, every woman is mom or mommy. and so, by two and half, liam was calling me mom. mommy if he was scared.
I'm relieved that it's ended with no effort on my part. I think if he knew it bugged me, he'd never have stopped...
my neck is still sore, it has been for two weeks now. I am at a bit of a loss.
I'm sick of this.
we're going to target this morning. for more new drawers. and toilet paper, saline solution, and a bra. once the underwire has popped out of place and is poking you, it's hopeless, right? I mean, is there any chance for repair?
I am reading the almanac of the dead and the next carol o'connell thriller: crime school. I like the word thriller. I don't own the album, thriller, and never have wanted to. I think the song sucks and the video, too. although I do enjoy billie jean.
the kids are watching scooby-doo. later today, I am unplugging the cable. I have told them that after today, we won't have cable anymore. I have not told them that I am doing it on purpose - not that I made up a lie, just omitted some details. just said, well, after today we won't have all those channels anymore, but we'll still have pbs AND now that we have a dvd player, we can watch all kinds of great movies. and they are pleased. nash wants me to rent the sound of music! my strange little child. mister tough guy who loves musicals.
the cable is something we have for free. which is why I have never unplugged it, I always feel like, oh but it's free, we might as well... and at first I really enjoyed it, especially the TLC & food network shows. but I'm over them. lately all I watch is bravo and various movies. seems to me now that I can see whatever I really want via netflix and pbs. and the kids' addiction to cartoon network & disney & nick really drives me nuts. better the sound of music every day than that.
right now I have disc 1 of freaks & geeks, pete's dragon and tipping the velvet, which I am saving to watch with rosana in celebration of her first year of grad school.
when I'm finished with freaks & geeks, I'm going to discover six feet under. then I'll be cool. sure. hey. who needs friends when you have tv?
Saturday, May 01, 2004
all of the food talk and all of our issues that come with it, it's reminding me of the film Eating. I saw it all by myself, one fine afternoon at the dollar theater in atlanta, musta been 1990 or 91, I think 91, and anyhow, it was a first step for me in saying yeah, I have a problem, I have issues, all those times I said I wasn't hungry, hello, I was lying, this is who I am.
and afterwards, I went to the grocery store and when I walked in I felt so good, like, I can buy whatever I want and I'm going to enjoy it! and then I just walked and walked around, I couldn't bring myself to get anything. I walked home crying and thought, okay, it's okay, I'm kind of fucked up but at least it's out in the open now, and it's going to be okay.
I nearly forgot that it is post poetry day. I always feel particulary poetry illiterate, but here are two of my favorites.
this one, that always reminds me of my former roommate, jamie, who was inclined to make every household note into a poem:
This Is Just To Say
I have eaten
that were in
you were probably
they were delicious
and so cold.
-- William Carlos Williams
and, my childhood favorite (it had special meaning for me, as a sea captain's daughter):
Wreck of the Hesperus
It was the schooner Hesperus,
That sailed the wintery sea;
And the skipper had taken his little daughter,
To bear him company.
Blue were her eyes as the fairy flax,
Her cheeks like the dawn of day,
And her bosom white as the hawthorn buds,
That ope in the month of May.
The Skipper he stood beside the helm,
His pipe was in his mouth,
And he watched how the veering flaw did blow
The smoke now West, now South.
Then up and spake an old Sailor,
Had sailed the Spanish Main,
"I pray thee, put into yonder port,
for I fear a hurricane.
"Last night the moon had a golden ring,
And to-night no moon we see!"
The skipper, he blew whiff from his pipe,
And a scornful laugh laughed he.
Colder and louder blew the wind,
A gale from the Northeast,
The snow fell hissing in the brine,
And the billows frothed like yeast.
Down came the storm, and smote amain
The vessel in its strength;
She shuddered and paused, like a frighted steed,
Then leaped her cable's length.
"Come hither! come hither! my little daughter,
And do not tremble so;
For I can weather the roughest gale
That ever wind did blow."
He wrapped her warm in his seaman's coat
Against the stinging blast;
He cut a rope from a broken spar,
And bound her to the mast.
"O father! I hear the church bells ring,
Oh, say, what may it be?"
"Tis a fog-bell on a rock bound coast!" --
And he steered for the open sea.
"O father! I hear the sound of guns;
Oh, say, what may it be?"
Some ship in distress, that cannot live
In such an angry sea!"
"O father! I see a gleaming light.
Oh say, what may it be?"
But the father answered never a word,
A frozen corpse was he.
Lashed to the helm, all stiff and stark,
With his face turned to the skies,
The lantern gleamed through the gleaming snow
On his fixed and glassy eyes.
Then the maiden clasped her hands and prayed
That saved she might be;
And she thought of Christ, who stilled the wave,
On the Lake of Galilee.
And fast through the midnight dark and drear,
Through the whistling sleet and snow,
Like a sheeted ghost, the vessel swept
Tow'rds the reef of Norman's Woe.
And ever the fitful gusts between
A sound came from the land;
It was the sound of the trampling surf,
On the rocks and hard sea-sand.
The breakers were right beneath her bows,
She drifted a dreary wreck,
And a whooping billow swept the crew
Like icicles from her deck.
She struck where the white and fleecy waves
Looked soft as carded wool,
But the cruel rocks, they gored her side
Like the horns of an angry bull.
Her rattling shrouds, all sheathed in ice,
With the masts went by the board;
Like a vessel of glass, she stove and sank,
Ho! ho! the breakers roared!
At daybreak, on the bleak sea-beach,
A fisherman stood aghast,
To see the form of a maiden fair,
Lashed close to a drifting mast.
The salt sea was frozen on her breast,
The salt tears in her eyes;
And he saw her hair, like the brown sea-weed,
On the billows fall and rise.
Such was the wreck of the Hesperus,
In the midnight and the snow!
Christ save us all from a death like this,
On the reef of Norman's Woe!
By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
in light of the jazz fest rain-out, zack, who was visiting, has gone and all I have left of him are these dinner leftovers. I'll eat them later.
I went to work, and the bank, bought supplies for sunday and then went to the movies. I got there at 12:40 and so my choices were dogville, monsieur ibrahim and goodbye lenin. I chose goodbye lenin and found it sweet and sad and funny. the general scene at the theater was also funny - heaps of tourists here for jazz fest - it's pouring down rain and they are at a loss. the place was packed. packed out, dude, as they say.
there was a 15 minute popcorn delay while they popped more and it was amazing how irked some folks got over this. I just sat and waited. my fresh, hot popcorn was well worth it.
as I went in, a disgruntled couple was leaving in the middle of eternal sunshine, the guy was saying, "it's just not enjoyable!" well. as I left afterward, a couple was exiting dogville, the woman proclaiming, "it was horrible. horrible!"
me, I called zack and learned that he had gone ahead and hit the road. he doesn't like the rain. I walked through the wet quarter, dodging dumbasses with umbrellas. I went to walgreen's, also packed, and got hair dye, mane & tail conditioner, deoderant, new sunglasses and a copy of instyle.
here I am, dye on my head, um, some shade of auburn, I don't recall, by garnier. do they say cut then color or color then cut? well, anyhow, I washed, then colored, and then I'll deep condition and check out how much of the ends really need cutting. my goal is to cut as little as possible.
Friday, April 23, 2004
and while I am in texas attending a national unschooling conference on memorial day weekend, ladyfest texas will be taking place just an hour or two away in austin, and I'll miss it. and that's more or less okay, I mean, the rethinking education conference is all paid for, and not by me, and I have no resources for getting to ladyfest anyhow. I do hope I get to one someday.
this morning's ordeal went as smoothly as can be expected and I managed not to hurl. now liam is at my parents' house, with his former teeth in a little box for the tooth fairy and everything. he's feeling fine. my baby will be completely minus his top front teeth for the next few years - wah.
thanks to the tooth pulling fun, it's tv-positive day here at my house. thanks to that, I was able to finish my book, stone angel by Carol O'Connell, and it was delicious. soon I'll start the next one. I love to just tear through a series, to get so into a set of characters.
I made more curry. delicious. I think I have found my new staple.
tomorrow I am going to get a new PO box, at the copy shop next to nash's kung fu studio. I also have to go to work to get envelopes and stamps for a parent mailing, and swing by the store for canned goods to drop off for food for fines week at the library. after that I've promised nash that we will "do science projects."
it's so nice to eat something tasty. these three weeks (okay, tomorrow it will have been three weeks of full on anti-yeast eating), so much of the time eating has been a purely functional, er, function and I hate that. I love to eat. not just that, though - it is important to me to maintain eating as a pleasureable experience, I don't want to lose that, to get all depraved by deprivation.
Tuesday, April 13, 2004
yep, I went to the lilith fair courtesy of hip mama, courtesy of chickclick... and took my two year old with me. it was his second big concert, and his first time eating ice cream. I was 8 months pregnant with my second, and it was hot as hell.
Wednesday, April 07, 2004
but I am sick although better today than yesterday, at last. yesterday was the worst. intense sinus pain and fatigue. I took some children's decongestant before bed last night and it helped me to sleep, although I'm sure it had some sort of sugar in it.
my primary objective is to not be sick for the weekend, for saturday would be nice but certainly for work sunday morning. mbd will be off tomorrow and he has agreed to take nash to the seder after kung fu class. I don't want to be sniffling and sneezing all over the seder plate.
I'm very much over being hungry all the time. right now I'm eating a pink lady. that's good stuff. but it's never enough. and the trouble is, my internal Eating Disorder Girl just loves being hungry. it's a job to keep her from taking over.
in a little while I'm going to bake myself some potatoes.
Thursday, April 01, 2004
and it's so appropriate because I was already feeling self-conscious about having used the fuck word several time sin my blog this morning.
IT'S NATIONAL F-WORD DAY!
The day we collectively tell the Federal Communications Commission to stop wasting its time prohibiting broadcasters from airing the word "FUCK"...
...And to start doing what they're mandated to do: ensure the public has access to a variety of opinions and viewpoints in the media.
Don't forget to fly your FUCK flag high today, by giving "FUCK" a place of prominence in your websites, blogs and/or webzines.
And while you're at it, send a FUCKload of Faxes, emails, phone calls and letters to the FuCkC, advising them to step the FUCK back off FUCKing "FUCK."
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554
FCC chairman Michael Powell: Michael.Powell@fcc.gov
FCC main phone line: 1-888-CALL-FCC
FCC FAX line: (202) 418-0710
Forward this reminder at will. We shall over-FUCKing-come.
for the fourth year in a row, nash's birthday party plans have relied heavily on good, clear weather and for the fourth year in a row we have completely lucked out. it's going to be clear and warm and just fine.
mbd made the cake last night (carrot), and this morning he'll go map out the treasure hunt. this time 7 years ago, I think I was just arriving at the hospital, having awakened a little before 7 (after two hours of sleep, having been vomiting much of the night) to the gush of amniotic fluid leaving my body, then discovered that our phone was disconnected, then got into the borrowed car (ours had been totalled a few days before), went to the nastiest payphone ever (on moreland, at the edge of little five points), fended off sleazy, stinky guys, did NOT stop for food even though I was starving because I though perhaps there was some urgency to my situation, and then got to the hospital only to spend at least an hour sitting around in admitting...
april 1, 1997 was a lousy fucking day and I hated it. april 2, 1997 started out pretty fucking bad, they pulled the kid right out of my womb a little after 6 AM, showed him to me and I passed back out, but around 9, which is when we finally got him back, I was feeling momentarily good, nursing him was great and I called at least thirty people, sitting there in the bed with my phone list from home, making all these calls that went like, well, I had the baby a few hours ago... his name is Nashua... yeah he's pretty big for a baby... nursing is great... I never thought I'd have to spend 24 hours in labor AND have surgery, what a fucking rip-off... I don't know why I had to have surgery... no, not because he's big, I don't believe that... etc.
now, on april 2, 1998, we gave Nash his first ever bagel - his first encounter with white flour and eggs. and he loved it. we invited a handful of folks over but torrential rains kept most of them away. jane, mark and duncan showed. jane gave nash a t-shirt that said "read to me" and a rainbow babies board book. mark held him and danced with him. duncan came late and we watched soul food and cried together.
on april 2, 1999, I was pregnant and nash and I had both just recovered from a severe case of bronchitis about two weeks before. it had been an intense, scary experience. we knew a few people via hipmama.com at that point, and invited some of them over. as it turned out, tessa was the only one who could make it at all and mbd had to go pick her and her sweet baby up. we had just got a baby pool and nash and I played on our gorgeous front porch while we waited for them. but by the time they arrived, he was very cranky and weird, didn't even want to try the carrot cake, which was to be his first real (sugarfest!) cake. tessa and resse gave him a large floor puzzle that liam still uses sometimes, although it's seen a lot of wear and tear now. and a few hours after they went home nash began to puke, beginning a three day vomit and diarrhea fest that took the entire household by storm.
april 2, 2000, we had been living in mississippi since mid-november, and in our own ugly little house since february. we had my parents, my sister and her husband, and this couple we'd met and their child who was two weeks younger than nash. they were very into reiki. my sister baked the cake, my parents brought drinks and ice cream, I gave a nash a little wooden train. the reiki family gave him a big, plastic playhouse with pooh characters all over it.
april 2, 2001, we invited a small handful of folks to the beach at dauphin island in alabama, for cake, ice cream and playing. we asked that there be no gifts, or simple gifts from nature. our LLL/UU friend from mobile with the three kids brought him a bag of seeds to plant, and the reiki family brought some flowers. it was sweet, he was happy. my sister was there with her fat little baby girl, and my mother was there. I had goody bags for the kids - 6 of them - with bug catchers and pinwheels. nash and I played in the waves.
april 2, 2002 was the first big deal event. because we'd been living in this very neighborhood-ly neighborhood for several months, we had, for the first time, been attending other children's birthday parties and so Nash had some ingredients that he felt must be included in order for it to be a real party. balloons. a pinata. a really big cake. he made a picture for my sister of the cake he wanted, and she made it. my sister gave me $60 to hire a professional housecleaner in case of rain. we set up the back patio (no yard, just an enclosed cement space) with chalk, bubbles, toys, chairs. I got all martha stewart and created this garden-spring theme with plant pots packed full of ice cream, covered with grated chocolate and then with a flower (plastic) stuck in each. this was a scaled down version of my original plan which had involved real flowers, making homemade tofutti and having the kids paint the pots. I did spend too much money on balloons from party city, so that each child could be sent home with one. we had a lot of kids - maybe twenty? we invited at least 25. we had a store bought pull pinata filled with overpriced plastic toys, no candy: bouncy balls, tiny slinkies, dinosaurs, etc. and I knew that we were now immersed in a culture in which discouraging gifts would be completely ignored. plus it would bum nash out.
it was wonderful when nash brought out the ice cream pots on a tray and they all sat down angelically eating them. nash still talks about how cool it as that we "fooled everyone" with chocolate dirt. the pinata action was insane, some of the kids ripped it to shreds and kicked it around the patio. the gift haul was overwhelming - I'd never seen anything like it. and my parents were there, and my sister and niece, my brother inlaw videotaping everything.
april 2, 2003 nash wanted to invite "everyone" so I decided that our house was not an option. we chose the neighborhood park and invited everyone, handing out invitations at the neighborhood playgroup two fridays in a row. my mother sprang for snacks and such at Sam's, spending I don't recall how much on cases of ice cream sandwiches, goldfish, coke, juiceboxes, ice, everything. my sister brought her canopy tent. rosana fashioned the mother of all pinatas into a harry potter masterpiece and we stuffed it with candy and a ton of weird little toys that I'd trash-picked and cleaned off. we bought a small, good cake from the fancy bakery and let the kids gorge on candy and ice cream bars while we enjoyed it. it was a circus, it was a zoo, it was nuts. my parents were not there. nash lost his first tooth in the middle of the party. and my brother inlaw took digital pictures this time instead of videotaping. I forgot my camera.
and so tomorrow, we will gather at the park uptown, in the spot where our unschool group meets, and there will be goldfish and homemade hummus and fruit and juice and bottled water, a homemade cake painted like a jolly roger, a big ass pinata full of stickyhands and bouncy balls and chewy candy, a treasure hunt leading to a chest of chocolate coins, ice cream sandwiches, my mother and my sister and my niece, rosana and unschool group friends and church friends and kung fu class friends and a few of the neighborhood folks and dude, I have to remember to get some film for my camera. nash has another loose tooth.
Tuesday, March 30, 2004
I went to sleep at 9:30 last night. liam went to sleep during a story (peter pan) at 8, and then I read nash another chapter of harry potter & the chamber of secrets and sent him to settle down and let me read. and by 9:30 I was nodding off violently, doing that thing where you just give your eyes a little rest in the middle of the page...
I still get defensive about how much sleep I need. or, I've had a resurgence of defensiveness about it since hitting my thirties. it has nothing to do with age - I've needed to make sleep a priority since I was 18, since I spent a year as a semi-invalid with chronic fatigue. that year, I called myself an inVALid. and I felt like my life was over.
so I get defensive when folks talk about turning in early meaning that they, or I, are "old." for me, the only part age is playing is that I have the wisdom and deep investment in self-preservation thing going on. I know what it feels like to be sick all the time. and I know that if I get overtired, I will be mean, sad and ultimately, sick. so I make not getting overtired a priority.
but 9:30! wow. that's unusual. and I have these feelings of I should have been writing, I should have been cleaning, I should have been doing yoga... but I was sleeping. and I feel okay.
Wednesday, March 24, 2004
Your dark exterior masks a caffeine driven activism. You'll take up a cause and you'll get ugly to advance it.
I knew I'd get this result, because I could tell that neither new orleans nor atlanta were options.
I love the chance to use "nor" in a sentence.
Thursday, March 18, 2004
Wednesday, March 17, 2004
when we lived in mississippi, partly because we had a total lack of social life, every single evening after dinner, we'd dance our asses off, nash, liam and me. I'm thinking we should reconnect with that tradition.
Tuesday, March 16, 2004
but don't worry, strangers on the internet say I'm smart:
Which America Hating Minority Are You?
Take More Robert & Tim Quizzes
Watch Robert & Tim Cartoons
Wednesday, March 10, 2004
so there's my argument for not trying to work early in the morning.
all week I've been going to sleep around 10, 10:30, I mean falling hard into sleep. I guess I'm well rested but it leaves me feeling unaccomplished, or like I am just marking time, like, okay, what am I doing? the only night this week that I was up late was the night I watched the pianist, it kept me up til nearly one.
liam is still sleeping. nash is in my bed, where he moved because he got cold in the middle of the night, and he's lying there picking his nose.
the tv is off and I'd like to keep it that way. it is so difficult to get a break from the noise of the tv lately. plus I have guilt because liam at four and half has seen so much stupid drivel that nash at four and a half was never exposed to. it's just sad. I'd like to blow the rugrats off the face of the earth. no little kid needs that clear a script for mean-and-nastiness. let them find their own path to their individual brand of mean-and-nastiness... then at least it might be entertaining. like nash's four year old insult: meet-a-motthead. it's much more fun to be called that than "you stupid baby!". kiss my ass, angelica.
I detest those "live, learn and get luvs" ads and in general, they do not match up with my parenting life - we continued on with cloth diapers with our second child, for example, and were actually more conservative with his eating (delayed solids), did more intentional attachment parenting with him (because we had read more about it, and observed more), delayed/declined vaccinations, were better, more informed advocates for him during his first few hours of newborn life in the hospital, etc. and when liam was a baby, we didn't even have a tv in the house. but since he turned three, it's been pretty nuts. well. no. the marking point is actually, since I got this job. almost two years. almost.
I read bell hooks' all about love last night. I think it depressed me. it certainly left me more sad than inspired. then I started natalie goldberg's thunder and lightning.
I dreamed I was suddenly at the oscars. some best actress nominee had been disqualified due to bad behavior (!) and so I was nominated, for my work in a small film. I was trying to mingle and be cool but I kept losing my children in the crowd. gwyneth was really, really nice to me and I felt guilty for having never cared for her. I wore a black dress, long and vintage-y.
liam is waking up and awwwwwwwww they are snuggling. gorsh they're so beautiful. and now they just turned the tv on. damn. spongebob. could be worse.
Thursday, March 04, 2004
Monday, March 01, 2004
Lent is the period between Ash Wednesday and Easter when devout Christians commemorate the 40 days that Christ allegedly spent resisting the devil's temptations in the wilderness. Growing up Episcopalian, I was taught to imitate Jesus every year at this time by giving up something I had a strong attachment to. My usual choice was candy. It so happens, Virgo, that even if you're not Christian, the coming weeks will be an excellent time for you to renounce three experiences that you have become a bit addicted to. Those experiences are berating yourself, denying yourself pleasure, and giving till it hurts. I urge you to give them all up between now and April 10.
I think this is something I can get behind.
one of my neighbors and I have committed to a walking routine, and watching each others' kids so that we can walk in peace. we started just after mardi gras, and she said, "for lent, I ain't giving up a damn thing." and I've been thinking, well, but we're giving up, uh, sloth or whatever. now I'm thinking, what is it with me and always needing to feel like I've got to give something up?
Thursday, February 26, 2004
by Joseph Heller
Incredibly witty and funny, you have a taste for irony in all that you
see. It seems that life has put you in perpetually untenable situations, and your sense
of humor is all that gets you through them. These experiences have also made you an
ardent pacifist, though you present your message with tongue sewn into cheek. You
could coin a phrase that replaces the word "paradox" for millions of
Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.
Friday, February 20, 2004
I'm feeling like a subpar parent.
liam's first words this morning were, "is your headache gone yet? can I have the remote?"
liam at 7:30:
mom, can I watch tv? where is the remote? hey mom, you have been letting me watch tv every day! how about if we only watch tv on fridays and saturdays!
me: it's thursday
liam: okay, how about we only watch tv on thursdays, and on thursdays we'll watch tv allllll day. hey, mom, do you need to sleep? hey mom, I'll bet you love me, right mom?
me: yes I love you
liam: you love me so much that you never want me to leave?
me: um. no until you're ready.
liam: when I'm ready I can go to the park all by myself?
me: no, NO, stay in bed, I meant when you are a grown up and you're ready
liam: when I'm a grown up you'll be old, mom. hey mom, someday you'll die! do you need to sleep, mom?
liam at 8 AM:
mom, are there any trains in new orleans?
liam: ther are LOTS of trains in new orleans, right? maybe ten? and even some in algiers point! and also trolleys. more trolleys than trains even. hey! did you hear that? was that a train or a boat?
liam at 8 AM: "did I sleep? I didn't sleep. I did NOT sleep. you need to sleep, I don't."
liam at 7:30:
mom, is our car broken? when our car was broken, they had to come with a tow truck. with ALL the tow trucks. someday our car will be broken again, because, when it's time to die, all of the meteors will come down. because, mom, there's lots of worlds. and mom, someday YOU will have a birthday. I want you to have a surprise party.
Liam at 8:30: can I watch my video now? can I watch it RIGHT NOW?
(after a stomping and screaming interlude, then there was some cuddling, and I said-)
me: mmmm, you're good for eating!
liam: and YOU are good for sleeping, mom! you are really good at sleeping. ha ha, you are the best sleeper I know! does it make you laugh when I say that, mom?
liam at 8 AM:
did I fell asleep before the end of chitty chitty bang bang? can I watch it again right now? is the sun all the way up?
liam at 8:15 AM:
I dreamed that I was in a soccer game at monkey hill, with my friends, and I went backwards from the way that you are supposed to go, I was up on the ramp part, kicking the ball up and up and up and then down the wooden part, and I was really kicking the way that my friends teached me.
me: who were these friends?
liam: you KNOW, my FRIENNNNNDS
me: were they people I know?
liam: one was a boy, one was a girl, and they were older than me. they were not teenagers, they were not grown-ups, but they were older than me.
nash: of course they weren't grown-ups. why in the heck would you have friends who were grown-ups?
me: well you guys have friends who are grown-ups.
liam: yeah, like Kami!
liam at 7:45:
mom what day is it?
(and then, after a discussion of days)
can I watch some tv now?
me: if you can be very quiet
liam: you mean not yell and sing?
me: right. I need for you to let your bother rest, and let me rest, too.
liam: (exasperated sigh) but mom, I just love rockin too much! I just want to be rockin all day.
liam is off to the doctor for more shots.
he woke up around 8:30 and started playing right away with his mini flashlight bead - a muses catch - and I think his first words to me were, "open up and let me have a look, mom! you're a very good patient..."
poor kid. I think this is the last round. I hope so.
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