I felt better with a dog in the house.
Don't get it unless you're sure.
It's OK if you're not ready.
Take your time, don't let anyone rush you.
It'll be fine. Don't worry.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
Saturday, January 30, 2010
I went to my Camera Flash Made Easy class today. It was a long day for the brain and I didn't get a ton of sleep last night but it was fun. As predicted a learned a whole lot but really I just need to practice a bunch. More on that later. After I've fired my flash in your face about 160 times.
I had to scurry home, though, to grab keys and pick up the Maggie Dog for her overnight here. There were missteps and foolishness and my sweet Aunt Fanny it's cold out there. Not the sort of night where it's OK to screw up an address and go 3 long blocks out of one's way.
She didn't want to come with me. She tried to hide upstairs and I don't know these people and wasn't sure if anyone was home so there I was standing foolishly in the foyer not wanting to poke around the house, trying to decide how to convince her to come to me. She'd come just within tongue's reach to get a treat but she wouldn't descend the stairs completely. I finally tricked her. I rattled her food dish until she came into the kitchen, gave her a treat then grabbed her collar and leashed her up.
She was much better on the street. Well, better and worse. She was more of a puller when she wanted to sniff something but she was calm enough to make eye contact with me if I called her name and she accepted treats and love on the street.
The pet food store was closed which is really too bad since I don't have any food for her. I have some treats and I've got rice and I'm thawing some chicken. I'm pissed they were closed, I was sure they were open until 8! Tomorrow morning will have to include a trip to the pet food store, if not for food at least for treats.
I've concluded that, despite being a deeply nervous dog, she's actually quite brave. She continues to be interested in places and things even when she's frightened. She continues to stand her ground when the cats act foolish, while remaining properly wary of them.
The cats are a problem. They're a huge problem. As long as we all sit quite still they manage to keep quiet but as soon as anyone moves there's a lot of bushy tails and throaty growls and the occasional outright attack. I was trying to pet them as they stared at the dog while puffed out to thrice their size. That helped a bit, I thought, but then the dog went off to get a sip of water and they attacked her. She had to be rescued and I yelled. Nothing like a firmly mixed message I suppose.
I have to play this experiment out to the fullest extent. I have to try to sleep in my own bed instead of chickening out and sleeping on the couch. Tomorrow I have to get up off the couch and do the things that need doing around the place so everyone has to move about the place and pass near each other and not have it end in a blood bath. We'll also go out for a couple of longish walks to give everyone a break but co-habitation is key.
This whole process of deciding about a new dog is even harder than I thought it might be. In some ways helping Emily to die was easier because I asked for clarity and I knew her so well and I knew she was declining so I could make a fully informed decision. There are many more variables to this one. Not the least of which is that this particular dog really needs one human being on whom she can rely and when that happens I have no doubt that she will seemingly transform. In truth she'll simply finally be able to be her real self because she won't have to worry about everyone else so much. I'm pretty sure that self will be pretty darned cool but the more I get to know her the more I also think that she'll be fairly strong willed and not a little sneaky. Spoiled by my old dog I gave Maggie a half a large biscuit then brought the other half into the living room. I set it on the coffee table while I wrenched my shoes off and she, without even looking to me for confirmation, sniffed the second half once, tilted her head for the right angle and snarfed that fucker right down. She's smart. She knows what's for dogs and that she's a dog so she has a right to it.
She's not a lap dog despite being a great lap size. She'll get close but not really in your lap. She stood next to the couch for a long while so I could scritch her, which she loved. It also inspired me to consider testing my new showerhead, which I chose specifically for ease of dog washing.
Making this decision feels very lonely. I think that's part of why I'm feeling the need to share the process pretty extensively here. What in the name of Steve Jobs would I have done in the time before blogging? I know that making this sort of decision with someone else presents its own challenges. I know that I am capable of taking Maggie in and giving her the kind of life she needs. I also know that with her issues and with the cats' issues that project would be a long, intricate and perhaps all-consuming one for a while. Maybe a long while. My cats are stubborn.
I don't need to decide anything tonight. I just need to press on with the experiment. Tomorrow night, when Maggie is safely back on a bed in her current home, it'll be time to think on it some more.
I did not take pictures at my birthday. I was too busy bowling and eating cake. Miflohny took some pictures and graciously agreed to let me post them. She never posts her photos to the internet, she sends them out by e-mail or gives hard copies always. In light of this I want to reiterate the common sense rule that you should not steal these photos. It's bad manners, it's borderline illegal and it will result in my being disallowed from publishing her photos ever again (my death, though unlikely, might also be a consequence of greed) so do not do it. Thanks.
The rest of Miflohny's photos of the event are over at Flickr if you want to peruse our blurrily ecstatic birthday hootenanny.
Friday, January 29, 2010
Something odd happened to me a few weeks ago so I wrote it down and planned to share it with you. Forgot all about it until now.
Sitting in the window of a busy coffee shop on the Upper West Side. I saw a small, curly-coated, black dog streaking at top speed up the center of the north bound lanes of Broadway. I gasped but couldn't do anything. Not true. I could have abandoned my two bags and coat and run out after it. I might have caught up in time to see it flattened by an unwitting delivery truck. Or I might have run aimlessly around for long, cold minutes seeing nothing at all. I'm not very fast. Certainly not as fast as an armful of highly motivated pooch.
I waited, fingers crossed, breath held, tears standing in my eyes for the inevitable human pursuit. In the brief flash as he passed I saw a collar and blue tags shine against his coat.
No one came.
No swift-heeled child, no panicked senior citizen, no lithe young man or angry mother. No one at all.
There are, I suppose, plenty of perfectly reasonable explanations. The dog might already have changed directions so his pursuers were off on the wrong heading. Perhaps he'd escaped unnoticed from a sidewalk tethering or mishandled apartment door. Just maybe he does this all the time and is known to wriggle home safe by nightfall.
I can't shake, though, the deathly feeling of a complete lack of pursuit. It's no secret that I would have followed my dog, distraught, to the ends of the earth. I was fortunate in that she held the reciprocal conviction so we were rarely far removed from each other. I know plenty of dogs who, love for their people undiminished, are easily distracted and prone to adventure. And I know without a doubt that their people - terrified, furious, shocked - would be pelting down the street, unstoppable in their search if this misfortune befell their family.
Oh Little Dog Lost, you broke my heart. Come home safe.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
I wasn't going to keep talking about the State of the Union but then I read this Anil Dash entry which weaves together that speech with the other big announcement in the media yesterday and I realized that I should talk about it as much as I had room for. Fortunately this is the internet and there's enough room for almost everything. Start there.
Then you could hit my friend Melanie's post over at The Colony about the two Os - O'Brien and Obama.
On a similar but somewhat weirder note (via Feministing) is basketball player Paul Shirley's in depth exploration of why we shouldn't care about Haitians and their problems. It got him fired from his columnist gig at ESPN which might speak well of ESPN. Then again maybe they were just spinning.
John Scalzi's piece about the SotU is so far my favorite and you should absolutely read it. (Short, easy to read, funny.) Quotes include, "[N]ote to wingers on both sides: expressing the opinion that Obama is not in fact moderate-lefty in the current US political spectrum, but is instead whatever thing you hate the most, is an IQ test in itself. Try not to fail it." and "Obama’s real problem is that in Congress, his allies are incompetent cowards and his adversaries are smug dicks."
If you can't stand any more about this mess we're in then I'll throw you a bone (heh). Go over and see what sort of a mess Aaryn got herself into the other day.
OK, that's it. You kids have fun stormin' the castle!
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
I've probably admitted before that I've never watched a full political speech before so that's not new. On the other hand I probably haven't told you why. I have an anxiety problem. It's not diagnosed, it's not medicated, it's not debilitating but it is pervasive. It was its worst when I was a teenager and probably right around the time that most of you out there were first being exposed to politics and were asked to connect to the process. Triggers include but are not limited to nuclear power, nuclear war, otehr kinds of war and marriage. (Kidding.) (But about what?) Nuclear war and nuclear power were big deals in my teen years and they're just coming around on the guitar now, aren't they?
Is that an excuse not to have watched a full State of the Union until I turned 41? Could I not have worked out some coping mechanisms (lord knows I have plenty) and toughed it out since it's the adult thing to do? Yeah, probably. But I didn't and now you know why.
So I've got no practice talking about the hour and 10 minutes I just watched. The only thing I know for sure is that the minute he endorsed nuclear power my heart started to beat faster and I had to take a little walk around the room putting some things away while I kept listening. My head knows that nuclear energy is clean and safe and smart when handled correctly but my heart told my head to go fuck itself.
Did the President of the US make fun of people who don't believe in climate change (and therefore science)? I think he did. That felt chancy. Felt kind of good, too.
This speech cemented something I've thought for a while. I like that Obama doesn't please one side or the other completely. Of course he wrapped up his comments by reminding everyone that he never said the change would be easy nor that he could do it alone. I can't be the only person who remembers him saying that in other speeches both before and after his election. I mean, I didn't even watch all of them! If you honestly thought that Obama would significantly change the world in a year or less then you have even less experience of this world than I do. If you'll pardon my saying so, that's sad because I am a poor example.
His ideas struck me as FDRish, which I suppose is either wonderful or horrible depending on your perspective. I don't know a whole lot about FDR but he gave my grandfather a job and so far my family all still has our heads above water, even if just barely on some days, so I'm partial to him and his crazy New Deal. Plus, he made the Federal Theater possible and that makes my heart ache with joy and loss.
I'm sort of even listening to the Republican response but it's making my stomach clench. This man's demeanor feels combative and it's setting off all my anxious bells. After a speech that took both sides specifically to task for partisanship this slick little man is calling out Democrats specifically. Shouldn't that be offensive and poor politics to everyone? I live in New York State, our state legislature stopped functioning entirely this summer due to partisanship, I don't take that shit lightly. And neither should you, wherever you live. Earlier he said that government needed to be reduced and now he's saying that government "close to the people" is best. I can see where he's going with both of those but if you put them next to each other they seem wildly contradictory. And then he quoted "the scriptures." Well, sir, I hate that even more than I hate Obama's "God Bless the United States of America" bullshit. At the very least be more specific, which scriptures? Each religion has their own. Now I wish I hadn't watched, I may not sleep and I'm definitely going to cry.
Really, though, I started to write this to say something related but entirely different. I went through my reader a few months ago and swept out blogs I was reading out of obligation adn not enjoyment. A few of those were blogs where the author's political views were a. drowning my enjoyment of the other things they wrote and b. were clearly not going to change. Since then I've gotten myself on Twitter and the other day one of the authors I'd decided not to read started following me. That was weird on a number of levels since I don't think she ever read my blog but it prompted me to click over to her and read through some of the recent entries.
During the last Presidential election this writer clarified a bunch of things for me about conservative views. I remember her responding to something about government charity. I'm not sure how charity was defined during that conversation. She strongly advocated that the government not be responsible for this sort of thing that private funds should be used or at least that citizens should be allowed to choose how much they give to people who need assistance and that government should not, in essence, force us to give. The implication was that anyone who deserved to be saved (whoever that is) would be helped with this system and there would be less waste. It was a pull yourself up by your bootstraps kind of discussion.
This week in going back to her space I discovered that her husband has lost his job and they may be facing foreclosure. I'm considering reading her regularly again because she may swiftly be facing the need for the sort of help of which she is skeptical. She's smart, skilled, motivated, strong and absolutely sure in her convictions so I feel as though she could be about to teach a big lesson about whether her plans will work. I want to know if she'll use government or private assistance and how she'll resolve this dip in circumstances. It's surely a dip, she'll be back on track soon, I have no doubt. But going back just to see how she resolves this misfortune feels like stopping to watch someone in trouble on the side of the road, it's rude and creepy and no help at all. I'll be thinking of her, though, because she's ground level, everyday America right now and she has a golden opportunity to explore the solutions all our political and media air bags are huffing and puffing about now.
I suspect they've got a lot to learn from her.
(Music Boy after being extremely well-behaved during a marathon dinner with me, his dad and our long lost friend. You get your own mini photo session for your pig after something like that if that's what you want.)
see more Epic Fails
I've got more images going on over at the Colony.
Also, please cross your fingers for me this evening. I spent most of last night working away to marry the Colony's Twitter feed (very sparse now, I know, I'm not going to tweet it up until I've solved this marriage) and Facebook page and it seemed to be going really well but it doesn't work. Going to have to try again this evening (*waves of dread*) so I can use all the good vibing you've got.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
1. Forget a face transplant, I want a full sinus transplant.
2. Seriously, an educational institution banned the dictionary. The dictionary. California, do you not have enough problems right now?
3. I greatly admire Karen at Chookooloonks. She's made a plea on behalf of a friend whose relatives live in Haiti and are trying to rebuild their schools and the lives of the children in them.
4. For those of you chomping at the bit, I'm working on having Maggie come spend the night on Saturday. Jury remains out. Forcibly.
5. I know that there's a lot to love about Whole Foods. I agree that many things they make are yummy. Their CEO, however, is the Mayor of Crazyburg and needs to be attired in the appropriately buckle-heavy jacket.
6. I should probably write a whole post about this but I simply can't. Neil Gaiman is an animal lover. He has all sorts of animals and his assistant is deep into rescue work and everyone who comes in contact with him must enjoy the furred family. He has been chronicling the decline of one of the family's members and it's just heartbreaking but I can't look away. I miss Zoe and I didn't even know her. Godspeed sweet girl. This is just one of a few posts on the subject.
7. I love Julia Rothman's artwork and I know it's too expensive for me for the most part. I do so want this pair of of images (top of the link) for my new bathroom, though. Wouldn't they be perfect?
8. Breaking News: I'm hungry. The boss has a very important call that might come in and he's in a lunch so I've served him his lunch and can't go get myself anything because I must wait by the phone. First World Problem-Havers Unite!
9. I have added to my responsibilities over at the WC (look for a neat photography post tomorrow). Not a lot but I had to put the brakes on a little. I want to help, I want it to succeed but I'm really having trouble motivating myself to work my own list for 2010 and I've got to be careful about giving myself excuses to neglect it. Need to revisit the list a little, too. Look for that soon.
10. Last night I started Craig Ferguson's American on Purpose (Thanks Dad & P!) and boy howdy is he ever a great writer. I'm only 26 pages in so I guess there's plenty of time for him to become boring or trite or sloppy or a million other things but so far I'm damp with admiration at his use of form as function along with he grasp of content and drama. Did I need another reason to love him? Really, no. Someone please send night vision goggles and a burner cell phone, I'm low on stalking supplies.
Monday, January 25, 2010
It's windy and raining and I'm on the 37th floor and my current reading material is a memoir about crippling anxiety disorder. Ah, Mondays.
I'm not sure how you garnered that from my comment. I remembered other reviews that made similar mistakes to the ones I noticed in yours while painfully and thoroughly raking through each word.
You misunderstood my very straight-forward comment. That's ... telling.
But I'm tired of our back of forth. I've obviously overreacted to a mistake in your review, and you're obviously just as argumentative as me.The film is funny, yes?
I didn't write back because I am not as argumentative as he. So there! (Can you see me sticking my tongue out?)
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Thanks to jrh's generosity and mad post office skillz I am reading Dooce's book, It Sucked and Then I Cried. I started reading the site in the middle of both her pregnancy and their housing remodel and I wondered how different the book would be from reading those posts in real time. Turns out it's a lot different. (This will not be a review of that book. Would you realistically assess Oprah on your fledgling talk show? No? Yeah, well, neither would I.) Something I'm finding interesting is how Heather almost never references her web site in the book. There will be tales that I remember being told on her blog and others I keep waiting for but she doesn't seem to mention the feedback she was getting back from readers or any of the hoopla surrounding some of the old posts.
This year for me has been a string of firsts in terms of things that happen when more people start reading your blog. Don't get me wrong, I'm still to blogging what Craig Ferguson is to the Late Night Wars but more is a relative term and therefore things happen. So there was the cunt controversy and the fact that I recently met someone online who happens to live so close to me that, with the curtains open, we can look into each other's apartments. Today marked a new one and I decided to explore it a bit, just for fun. (Read: To put off putting my apartment back together.)
In August I wrote a review of the movie Away We Go over at Please Pass the Popcorn. Until today no one had commented on it so I had no proof that anyone had read it at all. Fortunately I get all the comments on my posts over there e-mailed to me and I got an e-mail this morning with a comment from one Jon:
"They don’t go to Toronto. They go to Montreal. Maybe you should actually pay attention to the film before blogging about it.
Or was your error some failed attempt to seem laid back, yawning and indifferent? If so, nice work."
I hate when I make stupid mistakes like that. On the other hand it was a good review of the movie and it was written months ago so, why did he bother? Usually I'd leave this sort of thing alone. I mean, again, why bother? But I was ticked about something else so I re-directed a little aggression and wrote back:
"I'm curious about why you're so mad that I made a location mistake in a review of a movie that I really liked. Especially so long after the fact. I mean, I'm sorry, but not so sorry I want to track down tiny mistakes in other people's web sites and take time out of my day to comment months after the event.
Interestingly enough I was talking about Away We Go this weekend and made the same mistake again and corrected myself. Not sure why I keep thinking it was Toronto.
Thanks for reading our site!
It was probably too nice to provoke a response and truth to tell, while I'd have been interested in an apology I didn't want to create a huge dramatic opera out of a single note (see also: Cunt Controversy) so I went middle-of-the-road. Surprisingly, good old Jon took more time out of his day to write back:
"I had just re-watched the movie and remembered some of the negative reviews that made similar mistakes as yours."
Which is right about when I remembered that people really are assholes and not clever ones either. Couldn't keep myself from pointing that out so I tossed off a one-liner:
"So you made fun of me for not attentively watching a movie after not attentively reading my review. That's...telling."
And I expect it'll be left at that.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
I am not the person who stays up until 3 in the morning talking to an old friend. I try but I always poop out before then. Last night, though, a friend I haven't seen in 15 years stayed over and, for serious, we stayed up until 3 in the morning talking about theatre and college and old friends and TV. Lots of TV. Man, it was good to have her back.
She's gone now. Boo.
I need a nap.
But I'm off to dinner and a show.
The Year of Yes, so far, doesn't have a lot of room for naps. Going to have to fix that tomorrow.
Friday, January 22, 2010
Sometimes....oh sometimes I wish I'd decided to blog fully clothed. I see swathes of dark velvet anonymity and they would be soft and warm and comforting.
But I didn't. I blog naked and I'm too lazy to change.
Which makes times like this really hard because...there's a lot of shit I'd be saying if...er...people weren't reading. And there's some stuff I'm going to wind up saying anyway, it's just going to be quite the Bronc ride to get it out.
Short answer: I made myself a profile on Match.com
What's going on with you that you need to talk about but can't? Go anonymous if you want and tell me how luscious it is.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
1. Verizon is offering free calls to Haiti through the end of the month. There doesn't seem to be a qualifier for this and I have no idea, given the infrastructure damage, who is able to receive calls but it's a nice enough gesture toward helping family members and first responders to connect.
2. This post may not be one note but it may be in a certain key. The White House Blog posted a short piece by one of the US Military's first responders about conditions for their members in Haiti. It's nicely written and somewhat emotional compared to the blog's usual dryly informative fare.
3. My beloved Susie Bright pointed out a victory for conservative education in TX this week. How about these sample home work questions?
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
I've probably written this list a dozen times but what's one more if I'm already at 12? You know that road trip you (I) dream of taking? It's the one where you just pack your shit into your car (mistyped cat there, I'd fit a lot less into my cat) and take off. Perhaps you don't even tell anyone and perhaps you never come back from whence you came.
Then again maybe you do.
As of January 19, 2010 these are 10 things I'd see on my road trip:
1. Some sort of hometown parade. Preferably with a cup of lemonade and sitting on a curb somewhere in the blazing sunshine. Bonus points for participating Shriners.
2. Falling Water
3. Any Laura Ingalls Wilder location or museum
4. Mount Rushmore
5. The Grand Canyon
6. Baseball and lots of it at all levels
7. Redwood Trees
8. New Orleans and lots of it
9. Art Museums - Chicago, that one in LA whose name escapes me, anything I could lay my eyeballs on
10. A prairie. I want to stand somewhere that I can see only "waving wheat" in all directions.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Sunday, January 17, 2010
1. Say yes
2. Buy Flash - DONE
3. Write a book
4. Singing lessons regularly - A friend has gifted me with a lesson with a teacher she loves, I'm looking forward to that as a good start
6. Fix house - TS comes tomorrow to start this, I'll post about what's happening, I promise.
7. Commit to writing and administration work for The Women's Colony for one year (I write twice per week and have agree to set up and oversee Twitter & Facebook for the site.)
8. Plan Italy trip
9. Renew passport
10. Go to Blogher - August, buy ticket by Feb early bird deadline
11. Write Aunt Rena once a week - made some cards for this purpose today
12. Sign up for some online dating site
13. Go on enough dates to judge the dating site
14. At least one session with the fabulous PT, Shelley
15. Write a Life List (per the Maggie Mason model)
16. Take Flash class (whoops, that should be up at #3) - January 30, I've signed up and been confirmed
17. Attend live theatre - already seen Let Me Down Easy and In The Next Room, am going to see the new Ping Chong piece next week, planning to see Reduced Shakespeare with Alita and her mom in March, and my boss is giving me tickets to my choice of show (and dinner) for me and a friend as a birthday gift. There's so much I want to see.
18. Mermaid Parade - June
19. Take Alita bowling
What else? There has to be more. Or does there?
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
I seem to have sustained a bowling-related injury. I seem to have aggravated it with class and rehearsal. I feel 41. Plus a couple decades.
However, I also have a flash. Knowing nothing whatsoever about how to use it I've shot a few pics and I already feel fancier. Can't wait to have the smart guy tell me what I'm up to.
Since I can barely rise off the couch why don't you tell me what you're up to?
P.S. You've got 89 minutes to hop on over to Chili's and wish her a happy birthday!
Thursday, January 14, 2010
If you're looking for linear and coherent these are not the motherfucking droids you're looking for. There's a lot of thought here, though, if you can stand it.
There is this woman who I encounter regularly. She is devoted to her church and her Catholic faith. She tithes, she runs holiday programs, she is active in that community and she does all those things with her customary attention to detail.
Yesterday the internet blew a small incident at Grand Central Station out of proportion. There was a suspicious package, procedures were followed and the whole shebang was over in about half an hour, though it did include an evacuation of the premises. The internet (Twitter in particular) took the initial evacuation to the wires and had escalated the whole thing to a dirty bomb threat while the established news media was silent because this wasn't news. As I was getting to the bottom of this all I mentioned it to her and she was willing to believe immediately that it was a dirty bomb and to change not only her course of action for the day but her boss's and mine on the slim information we had received at that time.
Today I mentioned the earthquake in Haiti. I had just seen video footage of it and was amazed at the magnitude so I asked if she'd seen it. She had, wasn't it awful, etc. Then she told me that, despite her family's desires, she was holding off donating because she wanted to wait and see where the money was going. Remember when the Red Cross said money was going to Katrina and it didn't, she told me. She went on to wonder if France had ponied up some money yet....for it's former colony? I don't know where she was going except that French is spoken in Haiti so....they're responsible for it? Furthermore she knows there are a lot of Haitians in Brooklyn (indeed there are, many of them in my neighborhood, I expect the local Haitian Baptist Church will be raising funds and helping locate family members for a long while) and she wants to know if they're giving to the effort. Her tone of voice suggested that she suspected they were not. At least not enough to satisfy her calculations, whatever those may be.
Is it any wonder that I'm skeptical about organized religion and its followers? I may not know a lot about Jesus and his supposed teachings but I'm pretty clear on the fact that he would not ask you to question the actions of others, he would be more interested in having you question your own. He would, if I'm getting all this right, not have you ask, "Why isn't so-and-so donating?" and would instead have you examine, "Why aren't I?"
If there was ever any chance I'd become a regular church goer (and there wasn't) it was snuffed out not by Pat Robertson's money grubbing misinterpretations but by this one intense follower for whom charity beyond one's self is unthinkable.
Wyclef Jean has set up direct relief efforts to which you can donate $5 by texting.
"Cell phone users may make a $10 donation by texting the word "HAITI" to the number 90999, The donation will appear on the user's cell phone bill." I haven't done extensive checking on the veracity of this but I did get a notification via Twitter from the Red Cross saying that the cell phone companies do not take a cut of this, the full $10 goes to the Red Cross specifically for the Haitian relief effort.
This post via San Diego Momma details a few ways you can help, including Unicef. Baldsug's company works with Unicef and he has also recommended it as a safe and reliable way to assist.
If you're interested in what the White House has to say and do at this time, it's here.
If you're interested in what Pat Robertson and Rush Limbaugh have to say then you should be heartily ashamed of yourself and hope to all that is holy that you're never in a position to require international aid.
I woke up this morning to no hot water. It made me cranky just because I had to go out in the world and look presentable and I feel wrong in my skin and ashamed of my wild hair. Hard to work up a good head of steam on the topic, though, given that people are trying desperately to dig strangers out from under rubble with their bare hands.
Let's be careful out there. And kind.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Worrying means they're in our hearts and minds but they're probably going to need some more practical help. Here's what I've found thus far:
via @kdiddy, a list of organizations providing relief.
via dooce, a post of 6 things you can do for Haiti.
via my good friend Mel, the site for assisting a school she has worked with. The school always needs help but now it's sure to need more.
If you're like me you always feel a twinge at donating to places that claim to be mobilizing so quickly. I fear that too much of my money will go to administrators and not enough to help the man I saw bleeding in that photo. So I check out Charity Navigator to see how each organization stacks up and where it sends its donations.
Keeping them in our hearts and minds is still important, too, I'm not knocking that at all.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
1. I said yes to meeting this lovely little Rottie mix. She's an omega dog, she's in a workable but not wonderful home situation and we're meeting on neutral ground Thursday night around 6:30.
2. That fourth string of bowling. Alita deemed my bowling birthday brunch "Best. Brunch. Ever!" She was having a super time and really wanted to bowl one more string. Well, how could I say anything but?
3. Dinner on my birthday with Kath & Alex at the lovely little Italian place around the corner from my house. Then I said yes to bow tie pasta with salmon and a pink cream sauce. Delectable. Thank you for dinner Kath!
4. Home renovations. Before Christmas I asked Tom to come and do an estimate. When I got the estimate after the new year it was less than I expected and yet seen in print seemed like so much. (Under $2,000 to fix a lot of wonderful little things around the joint. It's a reasonable, nay, superb price for the issues at hand.) I finally said yes and today we went shopping at Home Despot for some of the materials. I'm excited!
5. The flash class at ICP I've been wavering about. Have yet to be able to sign onto the site and sign up, I really hope it isn't filled but I've been trying!
6. Buying the flash outright. I can do it.
7. A generous birthday gift of a singing lesson with a highly recommended teacher. It seems like way too much and yet my friend offered genuinely and I really want it so I said yes and took steps to take her up on it.
8. New boots! I bought my Blundstone's on Friday, got fancy shearling insoles for them, too.
9. My delicious, long sleeping bag coat of comfort and joy.
10. I'll admit this last one might be the dark side of The Year of Yes but it's the truth and I had to tell you the truth. I said yes to spending hours this weekend scanning old photos and posting them. I was supposed to be writing or cooking or doing laundry but I really wanted to do this silly little thing and it was my birthday weekend so I said yes and did it. And it was fun.
Monday, January 11, 2010
I didn't mean to choose it but when they mentioned it at the beginning of the year I started to think about it. The first word that popped into my head was "yes." The next one was "NO!" As in "Good god, no, I can't do that!" So I kept thinking about it for a while and trying to think of a different word, a better word, a more comfortable word.
So I concentrated a bit on how I could manage to focus my year around "yes." As I've told some of you privately I think the purpose of the exercise is to go for it full force, to reach for "YES!" If I'm perfectly honest I do not think I'm capable of "YES!" I might be capable of "Yes." I can certainly point in that direction. For the record, though, if I manage "yes" I'm calling it a success.
When I said all this to jrh she said, "Do you feel you don't say yes enough?" I do not. And when I do I tend to wait so long that saying yes is moot. I panic, I try to think through all the eventualities, I don't feel I can so I can't even try. If I concentrate on saying yes maybe I can get to do and see and feel a lot of new and interesting things. Things I like, deserve and maybe even need.
You guys, I'm not going to lie, it's fucking scary. I'll give you a list of things I've said yes to recently tomorrow but tonight I'll give you just the one to whet your appetite.
Tonight someone convinced me to meet a dog. She sounds perfect. I don't know if I want to get another dog yet. It makes me sad to even think of it. And yet...I said yes to meeting her because I want to meet her. She's a lot of things I love about dogs and she's in a situation where I'm able to say no thank you. I didn't say, "YES! I'll take her bring her and her leash and her bowl to my house immediately!" But I did say, "Yes, I'd really like to meet her. When can I do that?"
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Saturday, January 09, 2010
Friday, January 08, 2010
This is the last day that I am 40.
I think going back to Floor Barre for the first time since before Christmas will likely highlight that fact with excruciating clarity. Since it's snowing out (and I'll be within 3 blocks of the shoe store) I'll buy my boots, finally. If all goes well the treat of the day will be my very first 3D movie ever, Avatar, and we're doing it IMAX style.
In other words, kind of a regular Friday.
I don't love turning the 1 of a decade. It's sad and boring and old.
Can't stop it, though, so I guess, whatever I do today, I'll turn 41 tomorrow and some stuff will happen. Maybe it'll be good, right?
Thursday, January 07, 2010
I know that around the holidays and your birthday it's treason to buy yourself gifts and yet sometimes I do. I try to contain it to things that no one else is likely to know about in any fashion. So I bought myself this tiny portrait and I didn't tell anyone about it. I've been bursting to tell but have waited and now I just can't wait any longer.
I don't know why it spoke to me so strongly but the idea of having a small painted image (this is a printed repro but still a painted image in some sense) on canvas just thrilled me and the portraits were something I wanted to look at all the time. I kept surfing back to Etsy to gaze longingly at the images until I realized that $24 wasn't so large a price to pay for something that was clearly giving me so much pleasure and inspiration.
I love all the women but especially the three Naomi images.
If I were going to splurge on another one right away it'd probably be this one.
Of course the perspective on these two is intriguing as well.
This one makes me feel free and this one makes me nostalgic and this one makes me wish somehow I were her, which is odd.
Over time I see myself with a whole display of them somewhere. Probably on one of the small walls in my bedroom. I'm sure my decorator will think that's nuts but I like it and I like buying "real" "art" (whatever that is). And I like the way they make me feel.
Have you snuck yourself a treat lately? Where can I find it?
Wednesday, January 06, 2010
Since I wrote that piece I have seen In The Next Room (the vibrator play) and have thought of two more things to say.
1. I LOVE SARAH RUHL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love her so much I want to lick her all over like a labrador retriever. A pink, hairless, creepy labrador retriever.
2. For the love of all that is holy please take your children to live theatrical performances. Being an audience member for live theatre is a skill and if you don't use it it gets rusty. And if it gets rusty I may have to kill you using only your Playbill and a half-unwrapped cough drop. Last night, in the midst of a play that I was loving I endured the following:
2 ringing cell phone incidents
Texting/uploading of software to an iPhone
Snapping of plastic water bottle
Opening of carbonated beverage
Coughing (many varietals)
Talking (clarification for the hard of hearing)
STOP THE MOTHERFUCKING MADNESS!
Tuesday, January 05, 2010
I like to peek back over a year of posts. Sometimes it's flattering, sometimes not so much. I give you the first line of the first post of each month in the recently completed year, 2009:
January: I feel like I should say something about the new year.
February: I just wanted to let you know that I am not bleeding to death from the crotchular area.
March: (Not a typo, it's something my mom used to say. She probably got it from her dad.)
April: Teddy's tests came back negative which means that the slim possibility of life threatening organ failure has been eliminated.
May: (All morning)What will I write about today?
June: On Sunday someone I hadn't seen in about three years asked me, "What are you up to?"
July: My fine finned friend is feeling a little under the weather. Please send healing vibes.
August: I want us to do a little exercise here.
September: 1. I'm going to wait out the whole Facebook stalking possibility thing a little bit longer.
October: I need to write today.
November: What better way to kick off a month than by bursting into tears, right?
December: 1. Today is World AIDS Day.
Wow, I have to say, not a lot of inspiring first lines there. Some of them are good posts and I KNOW there are good posts in the course of the year (law of averages) but I might need to work on my hook for heaven's sake!
Monday, January 04, 2010
Sunday, January 03, 2010
P.S. If I took your photo over the trip and am not allowed to post it on the internet your shots have also been posted with appropriate privacy settings.