Saturday, April 29, 2006

It's Alphabet time!

Swiped from Poppy, stolen from Everybody Knows, the Alphabet Meme: (and Joke's doing it too, if you're keeping a tally...)

Accent: I can do a Pittsburgh accent if I want to, but pretty much "plain American English."
Booze: Rum and coke, beer.
Chore I Hate: Taking the garbage cans to the curb Sunday nights.
Dog or Cat: I have no pets. (Interesting: Poppy and Joke both have sons with turtles...)
Essential Electronics: Computer, VCR, cell phone.
Favorite Perfume: Not really.
Gold or Silver: Silver.
Hometown: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Insomnia: When I'm stressed out. Cure: stick "You've Got Mail" in the VCR. It soothes me to sleep.
Job Title: Librarian, Children's (I do storytimes and buy CD-ROMS) and Cataloguing (I catalogue AV material and check Dewey numbers for books.)
Kids: one teddy bear, Marvin.
Living arrangements: 1 third floor walk-up garret. Stairwell, bathroom, two large rooms, one walk in closet, one non walk in closet. Me, myself and I, (and Marvin, the teddy bear.)
Most admirable traits: Really? I'm not feeling up for that one at the moment.
Number of sexual partners: A lady doesn't kiss and tell...
Overnight hospital stays: None in my memory. (I don't remember if I stayed over when I was born, but I probably did...)
Phobias: I don't think so...
Quote: "If you keep a green tree in your heart, perhaps the singing bird will come." (Chinese Proverb)
Religion: Christian. Denomination: Presbyterian, Movement: Emergent, Missional. I was Catholic for about 2 years. I'm a much better Presbyterian, so I returned to my roots.
Siblings: One sister, 24. One brother, 23. They are my joys. I'm ten years older. The "joys" part was not always true. But they are now two of my favorite people.
Time I wake up: 7:00 or so. Depending on my mood, I'll get up then or lollygag until 8 or almost 9 if its a particularly wretched morning.
Unusual talent or skill: Cunningly wrapped gifts.
Vegetables I love: Asparagus, sweet potatoes, potatoes, chocolate.
Worst habit: Procrastination.
X-rays: Well, I fell on my rear earlier this year. That warranted a trip to the radiologist.
Yummy foods I make: Quiche, potato salad (I use secret ingredients), Kielbasi and apples.
Zodiac sign: Sagittarius. We enjoy travel, are optimistic, cheer for the underdog, and I love this one: "are prepared to be rebellious." I don't read my horoscope, but I am often surprised at how often the traits described do indeed match my personality. However, there is a woman I know that shares my exact birthday and we are like night and day, so...with a grain of salt.

10 Simple pleasures

I think I got this one from Kim and Bec...

  1. Singing along to Green Day on the radio, with the windows rolled down on a sunny day
  2. Having people compliment me on my dress (pink with flowers, thank you!)
  3. Eating dinner and reading Eat Cake on the porch of my favorite bistro.
  4. Browsing in a bookstore for a graduation gift, getting home and realizing I'd rather just make a cute card and making it. (So the gift is one book instead of two.)
  5. Work that takes my mind off everything but my musical selection (Billy Joel's Glass Houses, Indigo Girls' Become You.)
  6. My employee discount at the Book Nook upstairs: a can of Coke for 43 cents, baby!
  7. Knowing an alternate route to work and avoiding MILES AND MILES of backed up traffic.
  8. Prayer. Anne Lamott says her two main prayers are Help me, help me and Thank you, Thank you. I'm there, baby!!
  9. Knowing (yes, this is a crazy one) that I can come back to work tomorrow and finish this damn project if it comes to that, and the satisfaction when I'm DONE!
  10. Imagining the Mediterranean Nachos at the Sharp Edge for the graduation party after work at the Sharp Edge.

Okay, back to the project...which involves moving catalog records onto other catalog records...

Oh, and here's a thought, Deb style: Hug your friends. It is so easy to forget to do that. And so hard when you only communicate by phone or email. We need to remember that each one of us is flesh and blood.


the one with clay feet

Thursday, April 27, 2006

List Friday: 10 alternate career choices for Sarah Louise

Ten Jobs I’d love to have (in no particular order...) (the links are for the locales I'd apply to...)

  1. Video store clerk (you get to be with all the cool movies) I'd love to work at a cool video store that had all the old classics, the ones I've had to order off Amazon 'coz no video store stocks them, like Metropolitan...
  2. Movie theatre person (I hear you get to see movies for free). I pay good money to see movies on the big screen, multiple times. It's a thing I why not get paid while doing it?
  3. Own a children’s or used bookstore (Just like in You’ve Got Mail, without the Fox Books shuffle) As a child, I visited Cricket Books outside Olney, MD almost every Saturday.
  4. Have a talk show (I’d model it on Ellen!) I mean, I'd get to interview Robin Williams, hug that guy that sings "You've Had a Bad Day" (I did, ::sob::)
  5. Craftsperson/Artist (I’d have a studio…and exhibit things in galleries...) I love making things out of paper, cloth, using scissors, glue, buttons, ink...
  6. Radio DJ on WYEP, "where the music matters." This radio station is one of the best parts of living in da Burgh. When I was in college they played acoustic/folk music for four hour stretches (less now, but they've stayed solvent, so I forgive them.)
  7. Advertising Executive (They seem to have fun in the movies: Picture Perfect, What Women Want) In high school, one of my favorite things was making posters for our literary magazine's quarterly croissant sales. I also wrote the announcements read over the PA system.
  8. Magazine Staffer/Editor (I have always wanted my own magazine—one of the reasons I like blogging, I’m sure) Sassy was the magazine du jour when we were in high school, and *I* was the one to first discover and then subscribe to it. It had a few good years and then went bad and then died. Alas...
  9. Folk singer (Christine Lavin, eat your heart out!) I would love to be one of the Chenille Sisters, actually. They seem to have so much fun!
  10. Interior Designer (I’d be the next Alexandra Stoddard!) I may have a messy apartment, but it has a quirky flair all my own. Floral things abound. Silk flowers, tastefully placed.
List Friday, courtesy of Pomegranates and Paper.

New stuff on the left right side!

12 Left things this week:

  1. My parents are visiting California (the left coast)
  2. I converse almost daily with my sister when the 'rents travel (she's a lefty)
  3. I just updated my blog-roll and added:
  4. Badger (sometimes evil drives a minivan)
  5. Poppy (I put her right next to Joke--how cute!)
  6. Glamourouse--2 fun Aussie chicks! (and I just discovered my link is wrong, so use this one for now...)
  7. Pea Soup--another fun Aussie chick (who take amazing pictures and mails food across the oceans and seas)
  8. Lazy Cow--yet another Aussie chick (and former librarian, woo hoo!)
  9. Pomegranetes and Paper (as in our queen of List Friday, Loretta)
  10. --erica (who gets bonus points, since she lives on or near the left coast in California. She also takes great pix.)
  11. Debutant, who has the pink thing down. She's the one who asked for an outfit last week. She likes to offer us a thing to do each day (sort of a random acts of kindness to yourself and or others.)
  12. PCUSA blog (the blog of the Presbyterian Church (USA) Yes, I am a Presbyterian cyber-geek! (and another link on the left that doesn't work--time to go back into the template...)

The wild life on my street...

So Blogger wouldn't post this picture to the previous post, so here it is: the wildlife on my street. Wild flowers... and it's not my car.

Thursday Show-and-Tell, courtesy of Blackbird

Everyone has the right to walk from one end of the city to the other in secure and beautiful spaces.

...Everybody has the right to go by public transport. Everybody has the right to an unhampered view down their street, not full of railings, signs and rubbish. (Richard Rogers)

So at the bottom of the street is a school. It's where I vote.

This is the other way. At the very top, which you can't see, is the park I walk to (when I walk--um, the last time was April 1.)

I zoomed for this shot: it's Western Pennsylvania Construction Season. Too bad I didn't get pictures a few weeks ago that said "Street Closed."

The bane of my existence. You get a ticket that is $15 unless you don't pay it on time and then it goes up incrementally. And as you see in the next picture, the streets aren't necessarily clean:

Why the 10 of spades? Do you like the texture of the road?

I had such lofty goals...I'm out of milk, so I was going to walk (ha! have you met me? when was the last time I walked?) to the gas station which has a convienience store and take the camera with for lovely pictures of my street.

But then I woke up, and it was already 8:45. So I read my email, posted about Richard Nixon and his secret marriage to Diana, (Princess of Wales), trolled a few other blogs to see what *their* streets looked like, fixed a tortilla with cheese (tasty!) and went downstairs for a few pix.

Blogger is not agreeing with my goal, though. I just got a "this page cannot be displayed." Ah, Ellen is on.

Chick-lit farms? Is that for like for gum or what?

"There are now chick lit factory farms where endless eggs are laid in novels about clever, funny women getting a) hammered, b) pregnant and c) dumped before discovering that men come and go but the love of female friends is eternal. And so on and so on." link to article in the Australian by Stephen Matchett.

I have an interest in chick-lit. No, an obsession. Anyways, about 2 or 3 years ago, when I was a bit more naive than I am now (yes, really) I was going to start a web-store where I sold chick-lit. Part of my research was a daily "Google alert" for the phrase "chick lit." I have since (mostly) given up the idea of riches on the internet (I refuse to put ads on Pink Sneakers, I delete those "get rich emails" but I still, somewhere have a kernel of "oh wouldn't it be fun...") but I never stopped the Google alerts. Good thing. Because people love to make fun of chick-lit, and I find gems like the one listed above. Read the article, it's actually about how Dan Brown and Richard Nixon were brothers and smuggled drugs for the Queen when she was in Australia for the Commonwealth games...or was that Princess Diana? Everyone's favorite, JRRT is also featured.

And yes, chick lit, chick-lit, and chicklit all are correct spellings!!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Look at the stars, Abraham, and believe I am...

(Phil Keaggy song, link here.)

It's a clear night, here in Pittsburgh. As I walked from my car up the steps to my front porch, I looked at the velvet blue sky with a symphony of stars. I love the stars. I can pick out Orion's belt, and if I take time, the Big and Little Dippers. That's about as far as my knowledge goes. But I've been out in the wild, where there are no city lights and seen shooting stars. And there is a comfort that comes from the night sky.

God declared Abraham would be the father of many nations, that his descendants would be as many as the stars, three times in Genesis: Genesis 15, when Abraham thought another man would inherit his wealth, as he had no offspring; in Genesis 22, after God tested Abraham by asking him to sacrifice his son Isaac; and Genesis 26, when God tells Isaac of the promise he made to his father Abraham.

Now, why, Sarah Louise, are you giving a theology discussion on a Wednesday night about a man who is long dead? We can see through history that Abraham did indeed become the father of nations? I don't know, exactly, except that as I got out of the car and looked at the sky, the lyric listed above was what came to me. It was a song I sang in college, at Cornerstone, a Wednesday night fellowship.

I'm just at this place where I am having a hard time believing that I'm going to wake up in the morning and get through the next day. I stayed late at work tonight because it was preferable to coming home and sitting in front of the TV.

And for whatever reason, I've been batting a thousand here, too. Most weeks I get at least one comment a day. This week, I've been lucky to get one every other day. So whatever it is, either people aren't reading anymore or I'm not writing something that touches people to comment. It's like writing for a wall. And I will be honest: I hate that! I am not a person who likes long silences. I like communication. I like chit chat. I like background noise.

Right now all I want to do is come up with a good list, so that when Blackbird comes over for Show and Tell tomorrow, she'll smile at my list, too. So here's a list, for Blackbird, a free association, ten stars:

  1. Stars on Hollywood Blvd.
  2. Stars in the sky
  3. The Southern Cross (which I've never seen, but I love that Crosby Stills and Nash song...hold the phone...)
  4. The movie Frequency, with Jim Caviezel, where they have those lights in the sky that make the atmosphere different.
  5. Singing "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" with my Mother Goose moms and babes.
  6. "If you wish upon a star..."
  7. Star light, Star bright, first star I see tonight. I wish I may, I wish I might, have the wish I wish tonight.
  8. The Star Belly Sneeches that had "stars upon thars" from Dr. Seuss
  9. Starry Night (both the Van Gogh painting and the Don McLean song)
  10. You are my sunshine (cuz we all know, the sun is a big Mamma star!) -- another song I love to sing with my Mother Goose moms and babes (hold them babes tight, now!)

It's almost eleven and my yawns are increasing. For once I can't even prepare for show and tell because --erica wants to see our streets and folks, it's night out there.

So sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite.
And if they do, hit them with a shoe!

"It's still true," James said.

(Cynthia Voight, Homecoming)

In Homecoming, the first book of the Tillerman cycle, Dicey and her three siblings, James, Maybeth, and Sammy, have been left by their mom at a mall in their car, with their belongings in paper bags, with the premise that they are going to go visit Aunt Cilla, who lives in Bridgeport. (Is that CT?) Momma said that Aunt Cilla was rich, and she'd take care of them. After waiting overnight and at least one day (I've given myself 20 minutes to write, so you'll have to read the book to get the actual specifics, okay?) in the parking lot, having eaten the sandwiches they brought along, having ventured into the mall, they decide that Momma is not coming back, at least not to the car, and perhaps they'd better go on to Bridgeport without her.

Every morning, James wakes up and says "It's still true." (Meaning, it's still true that Momma is gone, lost, not with us.) My father gave me this book for Christmas when I was in sixth grade. He'd read about it in the New York Times and was very excited about it. We lived in Honduras at the time, and there was no such thing as online anything, just postal mail, so he must have found a bookstore that shipped to APO addresses such as ours. (APO for those of you unschooled in the mail abreviations stands for...and I have no clue. But it signifies a...oh yes! Army Post Office. It signifies an Army Post Office, which is generally overseas but it has an American address. So when we lived in Honduras, it was APO Miami. When we lived in Poland, it was APO AE New York. Don't ask me what the AE stands for, 'cause I just don't know!) I have a hardcover copy with a tattered dust jacket. Why I did not get it signed by the author when I met her in 1993, I have no clue. I had her sign a copy of On Fortune's Wheel that belonged to a friend's sister and a secondhand copy (that was already showing wear in 1993) of Dicey's Song.

I have Homecoming and Dicey's Song in both hardcover and paperback. I may have a third copy of Dicey's Song somewhere. For years, I'd read it, put it down for a week (or less) and pick it up again. It was my baby blanket book, my comfort.

And it's 9:00, so I've started the takes awhile for it to warm up to the third floor. Happy Humpday.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Free association...

  1. Rising :: sun
  2. Third :: son
  3. Disruptive :: children
  4. Surround :: sound
  5. Distant :: voices
  6. Suction :: cup
  7. Fried :: chicken
  8. Nuggets :: gold?
  9. Clip :: hair
  10. San Antonio :: fault

Okay, so is "distant voices" just wired in us, or are we just mimicing Kim? See what I mean, when you read Bec's.

I know it's the San Andreas Fault, and no, I do not hate children. (See #3.) Actually, yesterday (that would be Saturday, as this will be posted at a later date...) I had a wonderful boy-child ask me where the Spiderwick books were (and I was standing where they live) and I handed him a copy and he said (I quote, out of the mouths of babes) "You're good!"

It turns out he was looking for some Spiderwick books on hold. (Why do people think we put their hold books on the open shelf, in their respective alpha or Dewey homes?) I sent him on his way, not before he asked me if I had a nice Easter. Yes, I replied. So did I, said he, and off to pick up his Spiderwick tomes.

Why are all the men in my life either too young, too old, or (the age-old question) married? If he had run back and gotten on one knee, I might have said yes.

Link to mutterings.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Read this!

Books that are rocking my world right now (in totally opposite directions, I might add)

The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman. It's all about globalization and ipods and Google and how the world is changing FAST FAST FAST. I would love to get my father to read it (an economist) and hear his thoughts. Maybe I can convince the WSJ to exerpt it... (My dad reads newspapers. Books are what he gives me for Christmas.)

(I'll probably expound on TWIF more as the days go on.)

Schools for Conversion: 12 Marks of a new monasticism edited by the Rutba House. It's all about people doing things like forming inner city communities, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, etc. But it's like NON-FICTION! The letters on the page are black, not red, and these people live in American cities, today. I read it like some science fiction item, riveted and scared. And then I get to go (after I wash my hair) and discuss it. I am horrified! Is this the call Christ gave to us about 2000 years ago? How could my bourgeousis life even begin to try to...I'm speechless. I mean, I own a car, outright. I shop at Whole Foods. The stuff in this book scares the bejesus out of me.

Eat Cake (oh, I told you that a million times--just do it.)

Walk Two Moons. It's not Sharon Creech's best, and it won a Newbery (which unfortunately doesn't really mean too much in terms of quality as the past years have revealed...) but it is a good book, and the new cover (click on zee link) compells me. It's better than it might sound. Oy vey. If you want a fuller "book talk" from SL on this, go to Babelbabe's latest post. I'm the 10 millionth comment, towards the end.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

I luv ya, Black and Gold!: List Friday

Loretta wants to know why we love where we live. List 10 reasons. Ten, I scoff! A mere scratching of the surface of why I love this city in which I live, but here goes:

10 reasons I love living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (not in any particular order)

  1. WJAS 1320 radio, WYEP 91.3 Independent Public Radio, Saturday Light Brigade on CMU radio, 2 country stations, Bob-FM: radio wasteland we are not!
  2. The Primanti’s Bros. Sandwich.
  3. The Open Door at the Union Project (walking distance from my house) and all the other great missional emergent churches going on in da Burgh!
  4. The Pirates, The Penguins, and yes, the World Champion Steelers!
  5. Hills and rivers.
  6. Sandcastle: it may be 5 hours to any decent ocean beach, but the water slides and the boardwalk fries can help you imagine you’re at Atlantic City.
  7. Highland Park, the best park in the city, walking distance from my house.
  8. Tazza D’Oro, the best coffee shop, walking distance from my house.
  9. Babelbabe’s house, walking distance from my house.
  10. My lovely garret—10 years with no increase in my dirt cheap rent and a skylight, divine!

Bonus round:

  1. Mr. Rogers was from here. (When I went to see the movie, Joy Luck Club, he was in the audience. I didn't see him, but a friend told me.)
  2. IKEA is 45 minutes from my house.
  3. The song says "I left my heart in San Francisco," but I left mine in Pittsburgh.

Oh, and the natives talk funny, n'at.

It's not easy being green... (Kermit the Frog)

This is my Easter dress. I think my future as a self-portrait photographer needs a lot of work...

I picked this out of focus picture over the other out of focus pictures (well, I had five, but there were two that I liked) because it didn't show my dirty dishes. Yes, I am photo-crop challenged. I used to be able to crop a photo and now I cannot figure it out to save my life.

I am hungry, because I have put off breakfast--I told Babelbabe I'd call her if I couldn't figure it out (never having done the full length mirror deal before).

A little more text: the church I attend meets Sunday evenings. Everyone wears jeans. I am a girl. I like dressing up, at least once in a blue moon. I saw this as my CHANCE. I took it. I flew with it. You might say, I passed with flying colors...


Dress, Liz Claiborne, made in Honduras, found at Goodwill, 15 minutes before I was supposed to be at prayer meeting: $13.99
Tights, found at Kaufmann's at the end of the season, Hue: $2.99
Shoes, "got them at Payless": $3.00

Getting tons of compliments Easter morning: Priceless.


Thursday Show-and-Tell, courtesy of Blackbird.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Sarah Louise visits Burlington Coat Factory and experiences the circle of life

It was the most bizarre shopping trip I'd taken in awhile. (a while?) It was a Wednesday evening, which is MY evening. I get to choose. I wanted to go to Tuesday Morning, this amazing store I'd discovered on Monday.

I'd been to a Tuesday Morning in Virginia--I went with my friend PJ before the movie "Brokedown Palace." It's kind of a cross between Pier One, Marshall's and TJ Maxx, but not so much on the clothes. Read: cheap fun stuff, that you never see in regular stores. I had spied a set of 4 glass square canisters for 14 bucks on Monday and when I realized today that I had a little more in the bank than I'd anticipated, I decided to splurge. (It's rare that a librarian gets overtime pay--so rare that when she saw the extra $40 she had to ask the accounts payable clerk, who said, you worked overtime?) So I went in, today, only to discover that they close at 7pm! I mean, the library is open until 9--who closes at 7pm? Clearly, they do. So...I went to Kuhn's (which months ago was Shop and Save) to let them know they didn't give me the sale price for the bottle of Dove Shampoo I purchased Monday. Score, I got back 2 bucks and change! Sweet.

But I was not ready to go home. So, I thought, I could window shop at Burlington Coat Factory, a store where I can always find something to purchase. When I worked dahntahn (Downtown Pittsburgh), there was a BCF right next door. I still have some items I purchased there, over eight years ago. Well, at least one skirt.

As I cross over to the door, a couple is sitting outside, waiting for a ride, I think, since there's not a bus stop sign nearby. The man has a tiny Petco box that has airholes (it sort of looks like the boxes they used to use for Dunkin Donuts Munchkins) so I'm assuming they just purchased a small pet. I take a few more paces through the automatic doors and I am in Mother's Day Central. Spa sets, bath salts, hat boxes, hats, stationery, socks, books about mothers, books about daughters, books about friends...if it's pink and it says Mother's Day in black and white or by its mere existence, it is there. I try on some straw hats, as my sister's college graduation (woo hoo!!) will be outside, weather permitting. None really suits except for the black one, which seems an odd color for someone who's not wearing the robe and mortarboard hat.

I then wander into the household art section. Sculptures, candle holders, lamps...nothing really catches my eye. I spend a few minutes in the ladies department, but find nothing that really catches my eye there either. I am now into "Luxury Linens," one of BCF stores within the store. Towels, sheets, pillows. I find a green pillow with pink flowers, and add it to the socks I found earlier (3 for $6). I continue past all the shower curtains, toothbrush holders, soap dispensers.

I have crossed the threshold. I am now in "Baby Depot," and all around me are pacifiers (binkies), bottles, baby hats, diaper bags, baby furniture, toys...I wander through, not merely to torture myself, but with the thought in mind that I received two emails this week announcing births to two acquaintances. I didn't see anything that I could really imagine giving as a gift to either child or set of parents. Maybe it's the acquaintance thing.

Soon, I am in the men's department, which is flanked by the shoe department for men, women and children. Nothing there fit that caught my eye. (Read: many caught my eye, none fit.) (Alas...) Somewhere after the shoe department, I round the register area, with last minute Mother's Day impulse buys. I have come full circle from being a daughter, a friend, a tooth brush owner, a friend to babies, a shoe lover, and again, a daughter. (I guess in the men's department I was again a daughter and also a sister.) I made my purchases, including an impulse gag gift for the graduate (I'll reveal later...) and when I left the store, about 45 minutes after I'd entered, the same couple was still sitting outside the store, and I wondered who it was they were waiting for. I wondered, too, what was inside that munchkins box.

I drove home, listening to Thomas Friedman tell me about the flattening of the world, and up to my hot hot third floor walk up. Gag. I need more ice in my rum and Coke...

Reading: Julie and Romeo get lucky by Jeanne Ray (who also wrote Eat Cake, who is also mom to Ann Patchett, author of Bell Canto, which no, I still have not yet read. But I read Taft, and that *was* good.)

Must. read. book. (oh, and check laundry. That would make sense...)



scheduled outage at 7pm EST (4pm PST).

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

One if by land, two if by sea...


My grandmother instilled Longfellow's poem into my mother, who instilled it into us younger ones. I'm referring to Paul Revere's Ride, which you can find the full text on E-server, a non-profit collective of students and faculty at Iowa State University.

I was always disappointed as an adult to discover how few knew the significance of this day in our nation's history. "You know? The 18th of April?" "Paul Revere?" Blank stares. I'd even quote a few lines...

But now I have a true blue friend, Babelbabe, whose BIRTHDAY is on April 18, and now I'll always have someone to quote the poem with.


Today at Women's Bible Study, we prayed for our nation. That the next two years would bring a change, so that our next leader is not just a knee jerk reaction to what so many see as a "lame duck presidency." Today, driving to WBS, I saw my first "Hillary Clinton 2008" bumper sticker.


The other week, when we went on our "National Library Worker's Field Trip" (we visited two other libraries to see how they ran their tech services departments) I saw this book: How the Pro-Choice Movement saved America. Since I have friends on both sides of the issue and I don't like talking about politics (did you read "I meme"?) I thought it wouldn't be bad to at least be informed of one side of the story. I am pro-life. But I am pro-choice in that I don't see how it could be a law that you can't get an abortion. I read too many books in high school about girls who got back alley abortions, and who could forget the scenes from "Dirty Dancing"? I am always glad when people choose to have the baby--when Rachel on "Friends" decided to keep Emma, when Darcy in Something Blue decided to keep her baby (which later turned out to be boy twins!) I will be handing out baby bottles after church this week at Bellefield, baby bottles that people will fill with loose change and then bring back. This change will be used to support the Oakland Crisis Pregnancy Center, a place that helps women decide what to do with an unplanned pregnancy. They just got an ultra-sound machine. More women who are able to see an ultra-sound of their unborn child decide to take the birth to full term.

Now, the last thing I want to do is prosethelize to you, my dear readers. I hope that I am just giving information with my opinions but not hitting you over the head. I think one of the greatest things about this nation, about life in general, is that we have choices. I think we always have a choice, whether it is to say hello to a stranger, or to take time to read a book, or to enjoy a tulip. Sometimes we have harder choices, which bill to pay today, which laundry to wash first, which job to take. But in this country, for the most part, we have a choice. Women can do so much! I am so grateful to live in a time when women can choose to work some days and be at home other days--I think we've gone beyond what the feminists in the 70s wanted--unisex bathrooms and the ERA. I am grateful for the choices my friends have made--to be my friend. I am ever grateful when they choose to let me make my choices. And it makes me want to make choices that would honor and respect them.


I just finished re-reading Something Blue. I was sobbing towards the end. It is a book about Darcy, whose fiance has dumped her for her best friend, leaving her pregnant with the child that she concieved while cheating on her fiance. Darcy, among other things, moves to London, reacquainting herself to a childhood friend, Ethan. It is a beautiful story, with a beautiful tissue-worthy ending and if I didn't have DVDs and books clamoring to be catalogued, I'd go on and on and on. But alas, my work calls out to me...

Sunday, April 16, 2006

I meme

I AM: a writer (Yes! It feels so great to say that!!) (and a librarian.) (which feels pretty cool too.)
I WANT: sandals that fit.
I WISH: NBC hadn’t cancelled “American Dreams.”
I HATE: discussing politics.
I LOVE: listening to audio books in the car. (Yes, I added this category, so sue me!)
I MISS: living near my parents.
I FEAR: high credit card bills.
I HEAR: birds outside my window.
I WONDER: about my classmates from college and high school.
I REGRET: regretting.
I AM NOT: a punctual person.
I DANCE: at church.
I SING: and close my eyes.
I CRY: at the movies.
I AM NOT ALWAYS: quiet—I talk to myself at work a lot.
I MAKE WITH MY HANDS: crafty things.
I WRITE: letters on stationary and emails and blog posts. A lot, every day.
I CONFUSE: reality with my mind’s version.
I NEED: yogurt and a water filter for my kitchen sink.
I SHOULD: do my dishes and my laundry.
I START: books and quit midway if they stink.
I FINISH: bags of pistachios quickly.
I TAG: Babelbabe, Blackbird, Erin, and bobbie. And anyone else who wants to be on the team. Black and white uniforms, baby!

Update: I finished my taxes, woo hoo! I have to write my federal check and deposit my IRA contribution, but I owed the City of Pittsburgh 5¢! (Well, besides the money I already paid them in the payroll deductions.) Which meant I could file on the 'net, saving a stamp...always good. And I thought I was late on the City taxes b/c the form says April 15, but the website (always visit the website) said April 17 was acceptable. I may do the drive downtown this evening to drop off my taxes--they have postal workers in the streets to collect your returns. It's a twisted kind of fun...Sally and I did it when we were in Mary Kay. Oh, and I got to meet Andrea today! Saw Avi in the flesh! (Odd, I'd seen so many pictures of him that I recognized him right away!)

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Were you there?

Once upon a time, I was at a service where one of the old Spirituals, I think it was "Were you there?" was played on the bells. I commented to my Dad, "that is so wrong!" For a song like that, you need altos and basses, slowly singing plaintively, "Were you there, when they nailed him to the tree? Sometimes, it makes me want to tremble, tremble, tremble. Were you there, when they nailed him to the tree?"

Easter, for me, is one of those holidays. Christmas I almost always spend with my parents, because in college we would get three weeks vacation, which allowed me the time to travel to whatever far flung destination they found themselves: Warsaw, Poland, or Rye, New York. Thanksgiving I generally spent with aunts and uncles. Easter, since it was just a Sunday holiday with maybe a day off on Friday or Monday, was usually celebrated wherever my mailing address happened to be. In my first two years of college, I was often invited to my friend Pam's house, to spend the day with her family. I remember one year, my junior year in college, it was my first year at W- College in Chestertown, MD, and after church, we went to lunch at the dining hall and that was it. Back to the books. I felt cheated. Here it is, a holiday more important than Christmas in the main scheme of things, and I am sitting in a dorm room, with the spectre of papers to write. My parents were in Rye, New York my senior year of college, so I think I made the trip to be with them. Or maybe not. I had changed churches and was a part of a 24 hour prayer vigil Thursday night at the Presbyterian church in town.

So where I spend Easter is very important to me. A few years ago, I became Catholic. Well, you become Catholic on Easter, at the Easter Vigil service, which starts at sunset. So I stayed in Pittsburgh that year. Last year was the first year I celebrated Easter with the Open Door, and I think my parents just understood that I wanted to be with my friends and my community for this special day. This year, I had Mother Daughter book club today (no one came, but it was on the calendar, so I had to show up) and it is the OD's first Easter at our new location at the Union Project.

For me, Easter is not just the eggs and the chicks, pink bunnies and chocolate. It is a time of real mourning, of real reverence. Lent is a time of contemplation. This year, I had a notebook that I started when Lent began. In the front, I copied out a quote from Soren Kierkegaard, "So now, with God's help, I shall become myself."

I am beginning to realize that being a part of a community is also a discipline. Going to services that don't feed where you are is a part of the suffering of Christ. Thursday's service was too happy for me. But it opened a wound that needed to be opened, and it gave me a chance to realize that I had been depending on my community to fulfill my inner needs. Needs that only Christ can fill. So I had my own tenebrae service, where I lit all the candles I own, and read Walter Wangerin's short story, "The Ragman" by candlelight, exstinguishing candles until the only light in the room was that of the Christmas lights that I have lit year round.

In the days of wine and roses, when I loved being at Bellefield, the pastor there had the heart of a poet. He played the saxophone, sometimes in the middle of a sermon. He was not great at some of the other things, and through a bunch of stuff I'll probably never understand, he was voted out. But he oversaw the best preparation for Easter that I ever attended, Thursday Tenebrae services. He would read "The Ragman," and members of the congregation would read passages from the Gospel story. After each passage was read, more lights would be extinguished. I remember twice, sitting there in the dark, at the end of the service, just crying. Tonight's service purports to be liturgical. I am in the throes of hormonal distress, having slept 16 hours yesterday and needing bland foods and ThermaCare hot pads. I'll go home from work, stop off at the Big Bird (Giant Eagle) and get some spuds for my famous potato salad for tomorrow's after church brunch. So I'll pray for the service to open my heart, but I'll pray for my heart to already be open. For my need to not be met in the sacraments, but in my own heart.

Part of the gist of the movie Lady Jane (which is now on the list of my top ten movies) is that in the Reformation, there are not seven sacraments but two. That a person can come to faith without the help of the church and priests and holy water. I know now that I need both: my community and my own heart, bleeding as it may be.

This entry goes all over the place, and I do not claim to offer any answers, only more questions. I am writing this on borrowed time (since no one showed up for Mother Daughter, I'm using *that* time to write this, and I need to get back to cataloguing DVDs) and I'm not going to edit. But I guess I'm trying to wrestle with this: how do we work out our faith, in fear and trembling, on our own, within a community. Christ was alone on the cross, and there will be times when we will be alone in our suffering. But he also gave us the Church, his Bride, so that we could live with each other.

So I offer this post up to you, and to the One I serve, poorly, and with a broken heart. May we each find the joy and pain that this Pascal season affords us.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Thanksgiving on Good Friday--a family tree of Bloggers...

First, let me get this out: It's Good Friday and my apartment appears to be the site of a tsunami attack, my bank isn't open (it's a credit union) (don't get me started!) and I have to have $ in my account by Monday to file my IRA contribution, and I think women should get extra money, you know, for heating pads and other "time of the month" supplies.


Okay. So this is a pretty secular post for a most holy day, but I'm feeling crappy (see above) and so I'm just taking inspiration from bobbie, one of my favorite blog-people. She's going to to a blog family tree, like how did you get started blogging, who inspired you, etc.

The first person I knew that had a blog: Babelbabe. I was insanely jealous. I read it and the madness began. (That was like January 2005.) The first person that made me think having a blog was an easy enterprise and something I could do: Jessamyn West. She came to our library's Staff Day, and I started my blog almost the very same day. I named it "Pink Sneakers and Pocket Books." Over this whole time, Marian the Librarian was a cheerleader, having her own virtual world with some friends from college.

My first entry was on May 21st, 2005. I wrote it before I went to work. Around this time, John and BJ were thinking about blogs, and I knew that Alyssa already had one. Reading the Blogger Blog, I found the link for a concert pianist who had a blog and he became one of my first outbound links.

Through Babelbabe, I met Joke, Blackbird, and other wonderful bloggers, including Badger and Poppy. In November, bobbie and I had dinner. Then she moved to Canada!! In December, I decided I would go to the PLA conference in Bahston in March and Joke and I started communicating via email. He has become a dear e-pal, with a lot of "older brother" wisdom. He has an uncanny knowledge of the Scriptures.

For my birthday, in November, I got a digi camera, the same one as Babelb, so that I could participate in Blackbird's weekly "Show and Tell." Here I met some other folks that I sometimes converse with: Lazy Cow and Mrs. Pom (who, when S&T moved to Thursday at the start of the new Survivor season, started "List Friday.")

I had a panic attack sometime before Christmas, when an ex-boyfriend googled me and found my blog. I shut down and changed the name a couple of times, but within two days, I regained my sea legs and returned, with the current name, Pink Sneakers N'at (n'at being a Pittsburghism meaning "and that.") John kindly said, "But we love your blog," when it looked like I was going away.

In January, I was at a party and a guy came up to me and said, I read your blog, it's good. I phoned a friend in South Carolina and he said, I read your blog. So I kept writing, for those who comment and for those who lurk. For a while, my sister Beppe and my best friend Susan were regular readers and commenters, but their lives got busy and I miss them! (Coming soon--a post highlighting the fun I had while spending time with Susan and fam in New England, complete with pictures of the EZ Bake Oven opening.)

In January, I also started corresponding with Erin, who runs the Biscotti blog. She and I are on very similar paths it seems. Oh, and in October, I met Marlaena, who works at a church in the South Hills, but we've fallen out of touch. Life gets busy!

In March, I blogged for the PLA conference, which was fun. (PLA=Public Library Association.) I got to see Jessamyn, always a plus, and meet some other bloggers.

There's more, of course, but I can see your eyes are glazing over. Anyways, it's been fun, it is fun, and I thank everyone who has encouraged me along this road.

Because of blogs, I have read books I otherwise wouldn't have (am starting the first Sherlock Holmes!), forged friendships with people that live 37 states away (it's a Joke joke), and entertained myself and countless others. (Over 10,000 page views!)

Thank you, and good night! I'll be here all week (and for a long time after that...)

Technical difficulties, Maunday, and List Friday

Blogger has been doing crap for about 10 minutes. Ugh.

So I'm in need of some liturgy--our OD (with Valley View and Fourth Presbyterians too) Maunday Thursday service was great, but liturgical it was NOT!!! Back in the day, Tenebrae was my favorite was like 7 readings and after each reading, more candles got blown out, until the sanctuary was dark. It was a tangible way to participate in the suffering. What we had was a celebration and food. (Which was great, but not what I needed.)

I need Jesus, is what I need--I mean, is this a consumer society or what? (My church service didn't feed me, wahh!!)

So I have lit all the candles I own, and I have my copy of Walter Wangerin's Ragman, which I'll read from after I write this blog entry and then I'll blow out the candles.

SO, LiSt Friday is top 10 Hobby supplies.

  1. Magazines (I used to do only folders with magazines and contact paper)
  2. colored paper (construction, scraps, wrapping paper...)
  3. buttons (next week I'll post a picture of the purse I made in Massachusetts)
  4. glue
  5. scissors (that should be #1--my mom tells stories of how as a child I could sit in a corner with just paper and scissors and be happy for HOURS)
  6. colored pens (I like the jelly ones)
  7. a person that is getting the craft I make (I generally make stuff for people or on occasions, not just because...) (and sometimes that person is me, but it's b/c something cool or horrible has happened.)
  8. contact paper
  9. folders, envelopes, cards...
  10. hole punch
I adore crafts!! Thanks to Mrs. Pom for the inspiration. Sorry no link, I don't trust Blogger at the moment...

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

As an exercise, try to name every item in your kitchen junk drawer...

(, on why a written home inventory is important)

I even found some people on a bulliten board discussing how one organizes a junk drawer--like with dividers and stuff, c'mon!

Show and Tell, courtesy of Blackbird.

If one is good, and two is better, why not three???

Well, the time has come.

I have resisted for a long time, but Poppy’s doing it, Badger’s doing it, Joke’s doing it…I am moving to the land of multiple blogs. So this one will be my usual Sarah Louise-ness stuff, then there will be two new offshoots (plants?): Sarah Louise goes to the Open Door, (which will feature missional writing) and Sarah Louise, Librarian Extraordinaire, which will feature my escapades as (what else?) a Librarian Extraordinaire.

I have worried about this, that it will fracture my readership, but I already know that some folks just gloss over when I go off on one of my tangents, and I want to be able to go off on them, so this seemed like the best way to do it.

I won’t be introducing these two new blogs until after the Easter holiday and after I’ve paid the tax man, but I thought you’d like to know what’s coming up.

Next on the agenda: pictures of my junk drawer, for this week’s show and tell.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

It's Champagne Thursday!

But today is Friday!
Well, Thursday came twice this week.
(from Failure to Launch)

A long time ago, we all did that poem-meme, "Where I'm from." I dug this one out of my archives. I was looking for a different one, but this will do.

I'm from that Simon and Garfunkel song, "If I never loved, I never would have cried." I'm from lemon meringue pie from a box and icing flowers on my sixth birthday cake. I'm from a scratched record that sings, "A Patient Man am I, A Patient Man am I." I'm from the Mary Poppins soundtrack in my Easter basket, second grade. I'm from that box of records that sit in Falls Church. I'm that 17 year old, crying in a phone booth, every time the operator said "All circuits are busy, please try your call again," dialing your number and the country code and the AT&T card number sometimes 17 times before I got through. I'm from Old Blue and Granny's brown Chevelle. I'm from Columbia Women's Hospital, a building that is no longer there. I'm from the University of Pittsburgh School of Information Sciences and the School of Hard Knocks. I'm from games and games of Free Cell. I'm from movies and movies and movies. Choose the city: New York always wins.


Some things I don't get:

  • people who have children and feel guilty for reading books, knowing books relax them. (I was reading magazines over lunch, about "perfect mothers") (Bravo to Babelbabe, who reads voraciously, with 3 boys aged 5 and under.)
  • people who complain about visiting their parents. As a gal who has worked retail for over half her working life, you just didn't have the option to pick up and visit them. So you visited them on the off-season. It meant that I actually got to experience hospitality outside my own familial unit. And as a girl who has lived most of her adult life at least 4 hours away from the 'rents, sometimes as far away as 6 time zones, a visit home is never drudge. I know I'm an odd bird, talking to my parents sometimes twice a day, and at least 4 times a week...I hope going home is never a drudge--if it's a duty, it's a love ticket I'm paying.

  • people that let go of friendships. I don't mean irreconcilable differences--I mean, just not answering letters or phone calls or emails. My friends are my extended family. It hurts me that there are people that I knew intimately that no longer answer emails I send. There are at least two babies I've never met because their moms don't think keeping in touch is important. I am grateful for the friends who have decided to try again, and again, and again. (I smile as I think of you, survivors. You know who you are. )
  • Tapioca. I mean, what makes it look like pearls in pudding? (But it tastes good...)

Driving to Women's Bible Study this morning, I thought about him, Mr. Sixteen-Years-Ago. (I did the math wrong in the last post.) How when we were together (if you could call it that) I thought, he'll change, and in twenty years, we'll settle down and get married. How my chasing after cowboys has been trying to be the fulfillment of that seventeen year old's wish. How I don't want to chase after the end of the rainbow anymore, looking for the elusive pot of gold. I want to dig into the gold right in front of me. I want to live my life, unafraid.

So this, this is another one of those Kevin McAllister moments, when he goes down to the laundry room and yells, "I'm not afraid! I'm not afraid anymore!" It's like peeling away the layers of a smelly onion, which makes you cry.

Layers? A parfait has layers! (From Shrek.)

I got to talk to my mom tonight. I wanted to cry, to tell her how horrible work was, how I totally screwed up this particular thing, that I'm trying so hard to do everything right and how humbling life is, but my mom is not *that* kind of mom. So I told her that I got a pretty Easter Dress. I told her it was green, and Liz Claiborne. I actually drove while on the phone with her, (she would have hated knowing that) but I just wanted to talk to someone who loved me irrationally. Someone who didn't hire me, or someone who shares an office with me, or someone who thinks I'm a little looney. No, I wanted to go home, to that place where "when you have to go there, they have to take you in" (Robert Frost). I didn't care what we talked about, I just wanted to hear her voice.

Well, it's past midnight--maybe I stored up those extra hours of sleep this morning so that I could spend them here, blogging.

April is the cruelest month...


I truly have exhibited to the gods that I know how to sleep, so I see no need for them to bless me with it in the middle of the afternoon while I'm trying to watch Sweet Home Alabama, or before eleven pm last night (shortly after I posted last, whenever that was...) and until 9 this morning. Perhaps they have my address transposed with Babelbabe's, she's the one who craves sleep!

Apparently this heartache is not going to dredge itself out by
  • prayer, the purchase of an Easter dress, the watching of quality chick flick, or the passing of such wonderful days as
  • the Jokefest
  • H's birthday
  • Palm Sunday
  • The Drivelversary.

UGH! It's not that I hate all men, just the one who kissed me 17 years ago. Hate, actually, is a very strong word. And, not the opposite of love. Disdain, then, is what I harbor for the man who five-timed me and instead of being my prom date took the girl that warned me he would drop me for the next pretty thing.

Poetry writing may ensue...we've got to unearth this root and wash that man outta my hair!

Oh, and somehow there's no connection live with

Monday, April 10, 2006

Monday, Monday: or, Sarah Louise raided her Easter Basket a few days early

Chocolate does work wonders. So does rum and coke. So does falling asleep while watching "Sweet Home Alabama."

What else does wonders? Walking through North Park, listening to Caedman's Call, skipping rocks on the lake there.

And prayer. Prayer does amazing things.

And friends. Babelbabe and I met at Tazza D'oro, with the fan club of Primo. I swear, they are GROUPIES!

Oh, and guess what? I went to Marshalls, Dress Barn, and TJ Maxx. None of them had my Easter Dress. I should have just gone to Goodwill, where I got a lime green Liz Claiborne dress for 14.99. SWEET!

Today is the birthday of the Twinkie. 75 years and I've never had even one! And Katie Couric is leaving the Today show...(which is old news, but I couldn't bring myself to admit it until today.)

And Ellen, is getting wierder. Today we watched a woman who barks like a dog and the audience played humdinger (they hummed a song, Ellen had to guess).

And I'm hungry.

That is all.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

This one's for you, Katie, and for you, Gina & Babelbabe...

I'd be happy to stand next to any man I know in one of those labor rooms the size of a Volkwagen and whisper, "No dear, you don't really need the Demerol; just relax and do your second-stage breathing." (Anna Quindlen)

In response to Gina's post about the upcoming Holmes-Cruise childbirth event...

Confession Sunday

It's also Palm Sunday, the day of shouting Hosannas, but seriously, I haven't had breakfast yet, so I'm pretty grumpy. And church isn't until this evening, so I get to be grumpy for a little bit at least...

[okay, got the apple cinnamon cheerios my dad left from his visit last weekend. Yes, my dad was in da Burgh in my apt while I was in Baaaston, but that's a story for another day]

I'm so glad Blackbird posted for this, b/c I've been thinking all week that I needed a "confession Sunday" and well, true confessions...I didn't want to be the only one.

"Mammas don't let your babies grow up to be cowboys" is one of my favorite songs. Last night it came on the radio (this morning at 12:01, as I was pulling onto 279 South--driving home from the library sleepover where Sarah Louise got to go home to her own bed!!) and I thought, I have been chasing cowboys too long. They will never change. So if you know any non-cowboy types...

Thursday night at work, I did nothing but rearrange my email folders. (This would be semi-acceptable if I was also watching a desk and answering phones, but no, I was wearing the "Tech Serv" hat, which requires putting labels on stuff.)

After I left work yesterday, I went and spent my $3 Brewsters gift card on a chocolate sundae and sat in my car, read an entire book. (Sisterchicks learn to hula? somesuch Christian chicklit. It wasn't bad.)

I forgot to buy milk, again!!

I was e-vited to a baby baptism party being held today and last night, as I was trolling Goodwill for a paperback to read during dinner, I decided that little miss introvert needed one-on-one time, so I called a friend to schedule lunch. oops...

After deciding months ago that I need to get a water filter for my kitchen sink, I still haven't told my landlord I think he should pay for it.

I'd really like to move, if I could move in with some nice people--I'm getting tired of just me in this garret, of having to go out to find companions.

(See how those two are linked?)

So I get my drinking water out of the bathroom sink.

Poor Katie Holmes, her hubby is flying 6000 miles away and she's about to pop a baby anytime soon. Oh, right, the wedding is after the baby (can't they go to a JP?) I cry for her NOT SO MUCH! (Yes, I read the tabloids at the grocery store when I went there to pick up my drugs and FORGOT TO BUY MILK)

someone who needed a confession Sunday: a father at the sleepover last night who was checking his Blackberry while I helped his daughter with a craft. OH I WAS LIVID! That's why we invited parents, y'know, to participate! And no, he's not a doctor, he's a lawyer. (If he was a doctor, I could have understood it--one of my doctors has a Blackb and I am GRATEFUL, but what kind of emergency does a lawyer have at 11:23pm?) (My apologies to all y'all baristers and solicitors and such....)

instead of sticking to my budget and eating healthy, I went to Damons and had fried fish and french fries last night for dinner instead of having a taco salad at Wendy's. (But seriously, I think it was warranted, I mean, I then had to go help children make a mouse pencil holder which required felt, glue, and mouse ears.)

I told Sally at work that I'd give her back the computer speakers last week when I got back from Baaaaaaaston. They are still connected to my computer. Ugh. I may have to get new drivers, whatever that means... (it's not the CD-ROM, b/c even MP3s skip in the middle of a song.)

I do not recycle paper and plastics as much as I should. Most days breakfast is Carnation Instant Breakfast in a #1 disposable plastic cup that I then throw in the trash. (But I did just learn that IKEA will take batteries, which is great, b/c between my CD disc-man and my digi camera, I go through batteries FAST.) I have been collecting old batteries since 1998...well, maybe just since 2003.

My garett is a sea of piles and laundry baskets full of...piles. I have clean laundry piles, dirty laundry piles, and I have been home a week now and have not unpacked my suitcase, my Swiss Air bag, or opened my mail from when I was gone.

I feel guilty having complaints when it's just me I have to take care's not like I'm cooking dinner for anyone or wiping anyone else's snotty nose...

Oh, the humanity!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Easter, at home

Palm Sunday Worship - Sun, April 9, 6-7:30pm @ the Union Project
Stations of the Cross - Mon, April 10 thru Thur, April 13, 10am-3pm daily, @ the Union Project
Maunday Thursday Worship - Thur, April 13, 7pm @ Fourth Presbyterian (5450 Friendship Ave)
Good Friday: Stations of the Cross - Fri, April 14, 10-3pm & 6-9pm @ the Union Project
Easter Eve Worship - Sat, April 15, 9pm @ the Union Project
Open Door Resurrection Worship - Sun, April 16, 10:30am @ the Union Project
Neighborhood Easter Lunch - Sun, April 16 , 12noon @ the Union Project

A co-worker asked me yesterday if I was going home for Easter. I lied. I said, no, and did not embellish. But as you can see, I will be home for Easter, at my very place that I love the most, The Open Door at the Union Project. I won't be with my parents, but I can count on one hand the years I've been with them for Easter since I graduated from high school at seventeen. I love them, but my home is with the people I worship with, week in, week out.

Last night was wonderful. The

[pause while I call my father, get Bird instead, as they play "Sunrise, Sunset" on WJAS's Best of is the song my father and I will dance to at my wedding, when that day comes.]

First Friday at the Union Project was wonderful. Happy Hour with the Stations of the Cross--a bit of an oxymoronic paradox, but it was great. It was exhausting, as one of the presenting artists, making sure people "got" my piece, which is a bit bizarre. I won't be posting pictures until after Easter, b/c I want locals to come to the Union Project--it's a piece that is best experienced in person. I was there from 6:30 pm to about 8:45. I left when they started putting chairs up. (Today's event at the UP: Miss Black Pittsburgh rehersals.)

In a bit, I'll be going the UP, where we'll be discussing a book about Monasticism. I'm excited. Then, I'll go to work for the afternoon. Then I'll come home?? and then back to the library for the sleepover, the final piece of "National Library Week." Thankfully, I get to go home at midnight. I don't relish sleeping anywhere but my own dear bed after being gone from it for so long.

I love the play, "Fiddler on the Roof." The movie is just not right. I saw the play in Bucks County in Pennsylvania as a young girl. Sally, though we didn't meet until we were in our twenties, saw the same production, though perhaps not the same performance. I saw the play again when my sister was in the George Mason HS production, during the time I lived at home in Falls Church, VA. I have since seen the movie and it is horrible. (In comparison to the play, no offense to those who have only seen the film.)

It was wonderful, last night, showing people my station (#8, Jesus Greets the women of Jerusalem) and them "getting it." As an artist, I felt the pride of a job well done. I'll get a picture (John displayed it wonderfully) and then retreat to the comtemplation--the point of the stations is to simulate a pilgrimage. Last night was the ooh, ahh, how clever! Tomorrow begins Holy Week and the focus will be on the mesage, not the medium. But it was fun to revel in the medium, because there are so many creative folk at the OD! I got to meet Eileen, a fellow blogger, and chat with some folks I'd not seen in a while.

Off to wash hair...

Friday, April 07, 2006

list friday: foods that I will not eat

Recently, I read an article (I think in the New York Times) that said that your body is so smart that if you eat vegetables you don't like, the nutrients won't be as beneficial.

That said, I need no longer eat:

  1. Okra
  2. Brussel sprouts
  3. swiss chard

Foods I don't think I could try:

  1. Frog's legs (I can't get past the....ribbit)
  2. Squid (although I may have tried it once upon a time and convieniently forgotten, thank you very much)

Foods I have eaten and not asked what it was until it was digested, hours later:

  1. Stomach. I was at a party in Warsaw, Poland, and they told me the Polish name for what it was. I purposely did not ask for the translation until hours later. It wasn't that bad. But I think had I known, I might have had issues...

Not necessarily on the foods not to be eaten but more on the whole food scenario: it is wild turkey season here in Western PA. Two turkeys stopped traffic yesterday on the way to work and today I saw a flock at the park that flanks Bigelow Blvd, just as you're coming into the city.

Commenting on other's lists:

  • I adore rhubarb pie!
  • Cottage cheese, yum!
  • Macaroons, divine...

And I'm off to lunch. I'm thinking that thing at Taco Bell that's like a wrapped up Mexican Pizza...

List Friday, sponsored by Mrs. Pom.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

It's National Poetry Month, yins!

Well, the folks over at Semicolon are hosting this month's Carnival of Children's Blogging. The focus is (of course) poetry. Go visit, early and often--there's a link per day! (Sort of like a blog advent calendar, but not...)

This week is also National Library Week. The theme this year is pretty cool, methinks. Visit the ALA's site link, here: "National Library Week." American Library Association. 2005. (Accessed 06 Apr, 2006)

Okay, so it's awkward, as I try to comply with linking policies, but deal with it! I'm trying!!

And since I own the copyright on material I've written, here's a link to my poetry, as found on the OD website. I didn't mean for the webmaster to cite me as "Sarah Louise" but it makes it easier for me to link it to yins, so hey, whateve.

Okay, I think it's time to consider bed, at least. I am longing for a comfort book, like "Eat Cake." The Mother Daughter book for this month is at best mediocre. It took me all of one hour (my dinner break) to read the whole thing.


and when I was in Warsaw in the winter, it got dark at 4 pm!!

okay, so EVERYONE's doing it--railing about DST, so I thought I'd join the fray.

I'm sorry, your time is up...

Yes, I had to (insert expletive) move my car b/c it's street cleaning day. Except, how will they clean my street since there is construction at one end and a "Road closed" sign at the other? Yes, I love living in Western Pennsylvania, where it's always construction season...

I have 4 minutes to eat something before my phone date with my dad to do taxes...

over and out...


Monday, April 03, 2006

Monday, Monday: or, Sarah Louise is Hopping Mad!

This post has two threads: Copyright (the frame) and Christian critics who don't do their homework (the center).

Just visited a coupla blogs.

Okay, this is like white heat rage...

And I actually have better things to do this morning than work out my anger in this arena. (Currently working on Station 8 for the OD's Stations of the Cross, Jesus and the women of Jerusalem), see Luke 23:27-31.

As a librarian and a blogger, I'm beginning to think that I need to be careful about copyright. (It's been in the back of my brain for years, but hey, it's Lent, and you start thinking more seriously when you consider that guy on the cross...)

So here's some interesting reading on how the BibleGateway answers copyright questions (and why from now on when I quote verses, they'll be in KJV)

I live in a glass house: I have linked many a copyrighted article to this blog and no, I'm not going to go back and unlink them, but from here on out, you may need to do your own google searches...I need to find that Bloggers Legal Guide (from EFF, the Electronic Frontier Foundation)...

But copyright isn't what I'm mad about: it's that some folks have not done their homework. It's SO EASY to be a critic. Hey, I'm not crazy about Joel Osteen either, but be careful when you start slamming Beth Moore and Rick Warren, who on the surface may seem in the same "Franklin Christian" category (God helps those who helps themselves, which is NOT a Bible verse, btw.) Bill McKibben's recent article "The Christian Paradox: How a faithful nation gets Jesus wrong" which can be found on, blasts the aforementioned folks and others. Now, Joel O. is not a favorite in the Louise household (he tells a great story, but is it a Christian story?) and I admit that I never finished reading Warren's bestseller, A Purpose Driven Life. I have however, very much enjoyed Beth Moore's Believing God study and have found it invaluable in my faith walk. Also, Beth and Rick are two folks that join Bono in letting their walk speak louder than their talk: they are personally involved in aid to Africa. Rick, for instance, now reverse-tithes (that's tithing 90% and living on 10% of income) and is focusing on work in Rwanda, due to his wife's interest in the African AIDS crisis. You can find two great articles from Christianity Today, "Purpose Driven in Rwanda" and "Hunting the Big Gazelle" on their website.

Well, I feel better. In keeping with April being the cruelest month, stay tuned for more rants from SL.

Update, as I research the copyright issue: an article from Marketing Sherpa, and their link policy (thanks for clarity!!)

And from the Electronic Frontier Foundation: Questions about copyright.. and their Creative Commons info. (which took too long to find, methinks)

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Trit Trot to Boston...

So I didn't take pictures until my last day, as I didn't want to lug the camera around. I'd been to Boston, in the early 90s, so I have those pictures. (You wanna see them? Later, after I've scanned them (but I'll have to find them first...).

This first one is of some a capella singers (men, yes, in tuxes) from Haavad. Apparently their rendition of "Danny Boy" brings tears. Unfortunately, we missed that. But the two songs we did hear were fun and good. Ack! Have I been away so long that my vocabulary has diminished to "fun" and "good" as descriptors? We'll work on that. Meanwhile, next slide...

The view from my hotel room, on a misty Saturday morning.

The salsa band at the PLA reception at the Boston Library. Still learning how to use the camera, I promise, this was the best shot. We'll just say it's artistic.

One of the librarians was light on her feet so one of the members of the band came off stage to dance with her. Again, it is an art photo. But I'm rather proud of it.

The detail on the headboard of the bed at the Radisson.

So, I'm sorry, no ducklings or monuments. No swans, no Dunkin Donuts. But believe me, I had fun in Bean town and can't wait for my next trip back. And yes, Joke, we went to the Legal Seafood on the second floor. Guess what? It now has a bar! But the service and the food were wonderful. I had rainbow trout.

Gotta go lunch!

Show and Tell: Windows!

Well, it's only one window, but it's the most important one in my apartment, the skylight. Blackbird wanted some pix and there just happened to be snow and well, here it is. Why would anyone leave this garret for longer than 2 weeks or 3 years, I ask you?

I took some other pictures but this one was the best one. Next up: Baaston. But first I have to crawl underneath some furniture to attach my cord to my USB and curse the men at Ikea...