Saturday, August 30, 2008

A fortnight...

Fourteen things, since I was pretty much gone for a fortnight, not in any particular order:
  1. Watched the movie Giant. Didn't fall in love with James Dean.
  2. Watched the movie The Philadelphia Story. Fell in love with Katherine Hepburn.
  3. Caught up on some issues of Vogue, including the ultra-fat September 2007 issue.
  4. Worked on two puzzles, one we finished, one we packed up in labeled Zip lock bags.
  5. Got a lobster burn on my left shoulder, which is pretty much faded and peeled by now.
  6. Spent the evening (tonight) watching SATC, Season 6, Part 1, whilst doing laundry.
  7. Co-worker popped her baby boy this morning! Congrats!! (We were daring, we took her out for lunch yesterday, whilst she was having contractions.)
  8. I need to do some serious cleaning and de-cluttering in the apartment.
  9. Sandcastle on Monday--and the forecast is sunny!
  10. I now only have one car on my car insurance. His name is Elliot and he is "stealth blue."
  11. I cried as my dad drove Lucy the Honda away, and promptly backed into the parked car behind me. No harm, but I flagged my dad down and had him make sure. Then *I* drove away (on my way to work.)
  12. I heart Twitter.
  13. I am getting used to my new pink cell phone (it was the two year upgrade time). Must procure a fun ring tone and set my speed dials. Oh, and it has a camera.
  14. It's time for bed.
I promise to write something soon. I thought I was going to tonight, but I got all blocked. But lists are fun too.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Insomnia, thy name is PMS...

Today I gave up my Aunt Margaret's table. I lent it to a new friend who has just started renting a house and needed more furniture to fill it up. It was that or let my landlord use it to stack his golf clubs. (Well, we would have found a family member to house it, but new friend, let's see, we'll call her Margaret, for Margaret's table is now hers.)

My Aunt Margaret got married, eloped, when she was fifty. She married a judge from the office where she was a secretary. Their "meet cute" had something to do with baseball tickets. To the Mets, I thought, but someone said the Mets weren't around then. Aunt Margaret was a career girl in the twenties and thirties. I guess she got married in the late forties, as she was born in 1898. (You do the math, I'm too tired.) It is a family mystery as to why she married him. Maybe he made her laugh, muses my mother. All my mother remembers is that he was old. But he bought Aunt Margaret a pig, (she wanted one) and when she was widowed, Margaret made it possible for my mom to go to camp two weeks in a row one summer. She bought everyone magazine subscriptions, and took us to see "Hello Dolly" one summer, on Broadway. My grandmother, (not Margaret's sister in law, but my dad's mom, who was friends with Margaret through some club, not because my mom married my dad) bought me soundtracks to every play I'd seen. I still have all of them, even though I haven't played vinyl for years.

I love sitting here and discovering what will come out. It's like no other kind of writing. When I journal, it's generally because I have to work something out. When I write a letter, it's to a specific "Dear you." When I write a cover letter (let's not talk about it) I freeze until I get to the second draft that has been doctored by Kiki (dear dear Kiki). But when I come here, and I'm in the right place, the writing just comes.

Of course, as soon as I write a sentence like that, the flow stops. In the background, I'm listening to the commentary with version of the season finale of Season Five. So I stop every now and then to turn back to the TV behind me. What I love about the commentary for this particular episode is that Michael Patrick King doesn't talk over the dialogue, as he often does in other commentary episodes, especially one with Berger in Season Six. (But we won't get into that here.) I had lunch with a dear one this week, Kay. And she and I are the type of friends that will never run out of things to talk about. On Tuesday, at Mad Mex, we could not stop talking about SATC. We know all the episodes by heart and love them all--and agree that a good show is one that can be better by talking about it with friends.

Well, my neck is getting tired enough that maybe my body can be tired enough and I can sleep. Tomorrow--Sandcastle. It is my favorite day of every summer. My friend K. and I have been going for the past three years. I've gone for the past five. But I'm too tired to write more...maybe sleep will come...

Monday, August 11, 2008

changing slowly...

So, um, as you may have noticed, not much has changed 'round here. I'm thinking, but not ready to do the deed.

But in other news, I created 4 bags of recycled paper yesterday (and that's not counting all the paper that is on the way to the shredder.) I'm ready for a break, maybe I'll drive over to the paper recycling boxes at the Union Project, get a cookie or something, and drive over to Goodwill to drop off the four or so bags that are going there.

And pictures. I really owe yins some pictures. Well, I suppose I could give you a few now. (You'd like that, wouldn't you?)

Roses from Sally's back yard.

Tiger Lilies from...somewhere in Pittsburgh. I think the Union Project.

Did I ever do a "Yellowstone Park/Montana" post? I should...These are from Jenny Lake.

These are from Yellowstone Park. Yes, we got a bear shaped soap when we stayed in the Park.

Old Faithful.

More to come, I promise!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

More about why I adore Carrie and her friends...

They are very literate. Only today, whilst reading an article in the NYT, I came across the phrase, "Four legs good, two legs bad." Since high school was AGES ago, and I don't really remember reading Animal Farm as much as remembering that I did read it, I didn't realize this was yet another literary allusion. (Carrie says "two legs good, four legs bad" in the episode "Sex and the Country" which also has allusions to Old MacDonald has a farm ("e-i-e-i-o.")

Of course, now that I've started, my brain has stalled.

Oh, right. So in the Season Two finale, when Natasha and Big get engaged, Carrie and friends wax eloquently about the movie "The Way We Were," which I had never seen, but have now. I see now how the episode sort of mirrored the movie, but the episode is better than the movie, although I've been told that I needed to see the movie when I was 25. Which brings up a thought about SATC in general. I have friends in their twenties who don't like the show. And friends in their twenties who adore it. Then I have friends of varying ages who don't care if they ever see the show. Personally, I think you should be at least 32 before you watch it, you need to have a little bitterness that comes with the third decade.

That said, I don't think everyone should watch it, or that everyone will like it. I watch it because the characters are smart, I can relate to being thirtysomething and single, and I like the theme music. (I have it as the ring tone for my phone.) As a woman who made a few or more mistakes in my early years (oh, did I stop?) I commiserate with Carrie & Co. As they say, let she who has no sin throw the first stone.

When I was in my senior year of high school, something changed. All of a sudden, I stopped being Miss Goody Two Shoes. My two best friends had boyfriends and were losing their virginities, and I read books like My Mother/My Self and devoured copies of Cosmopolitan. I worried about how it would be, dating when you had to think about whose place to spend the night. Second semester, I had my first "boyfriend" who was an absolute jerk and in many ways I am still recovering.

Then I went off to college. When I found Jesus (I know that sounds dorky, but maybe a little bit less dorky than "born again") my freshman year, I thought, "phew! I won't have to think about that again" and put sex in a "after I'm married" compartment. And five years later, I started dating men. (I only had unrequited crushes in college.) And Pandora's box opened up and I was making decisions about whose place to spend the night. I'm not proud of those years, and my heart is broken in places that are mending, even now.

But watching SATC helps me to see that there are reasons you break up with a guy besides, "you're not a Christian, so I can't keep dating you." (Yes, I actually said those words, to at least two men.) What I couldn't see was that I was actually breaking up with them because they weren't respecting me, but I didn't have the words to say that. In the two quasi-healthy relationships I had where I did the breaking up, I was able to say, "This isn't working" or "You're drinking again, so I'm out of here." But until I watched SATC, I felt like no one understood my story. I had two kinds of friends: Christians (who had either not had indiscretions or didn't talk about them) and non-Christians who were experimenting like crazy. And I felt caught in the middle--I felt I'd done enough experimenting but I didn't feel like my Christian friends would understand, and I certainly didn't want to encourage my non-Christian friends in their experimentation, but at the same time not judge them (or have them judge me). Talk about being between a rock and a hard place.

I remember, my freshman year of college, walking back to Carlow after Cornerstone (the college Christian fellowship group I attended) with two girls. The guest speakers were a married couple. The guy had "sowed his oats" before getting married and I think maybe the girl had not. We all sang "Summer Nights" from the movie Grease and the couple used the song to show the difference between how men and women look at romance, love, and sex. We'll call the two girls I was walking home with Jill and Jackie.

Jill to Jackie: "I would never want to marry a man that wasn't a virgin when we got married." Jackie to Jill: "Yeah."

And there it was. Two more people I couldn't talk to about sex.


My brain is so tangled and mangled -- this is the last day of Summer Reading, we have a Storytelling Festival going on too, and so I'm sticking out my tongue at my inner English teacher and ending here, with no real conclusion. I'm too busy these days to come back and work on this more.



Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Friday, August 01, 2008

It's Friday!!

Let the circus begin. Along with cooking internet casseroles (realized my way of consoling friends is to comment on every picture in their Facebook profiles), and updating last night's post, (thank you Cuileanne!) today is the day of the famed Stuffed Aminal Sleepover. (YES, deliberate misspelling, dear English teacher.)

If I wrote about everything, I'd be sitting here till noon. (You know, instead of LIVING my life.)

Oh, but hey, Loretta has reinstated List Friday. Go read. It's all about summer food in your childhood. (Or summer pictures. I'm mixed up.)

Oh, and last night I tweeted this. Because life is good. I need to get the twitter thing back on the blog. But not this weekend. I will be that blur you don't see.