Thursday, November 30, 2006

My thin Florida blood decided sometime last night that it was tired of all the walking around in the rain and snow and hail, and if I wasn't going to stay home on my own then it was going to make me. So I'm parked on the couch today with a throat like a porcupine and the chills, along with some juice and fashion magazines and potato chips. I guess I should probably buy a hat sometime this winter. A hat that I'll actually wear.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Holy freaking christ, people, do you know how cool it is to be going from someplace to someplace else in the SNOW? (Sleet? Hail? What's the difference?)

It's snowed a wee bit in the three and a half years I've lived here, but it doesn't do it much down in South Lake Union and never during the day. So I commuted home in the...whatever. And it rocked. Completely.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


(P.S.: I haven't been able to check my email for days, so if you sent me one I haven't gotten it yet.)

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Sometimes I am nostalgic for the fear, feeling like I missed my chance to be afraid out loud of things that were tangible. And so now it's easier to be afraid in retrospect, to say, "I was afraid then because he was on smack and wouldn't stop hitting her" rather than, "I am afraid now because in ten years I might turn into the punchline of a joke I'd tell today." In trying to be brave and quiet and not make waves I completely lost the opportunity to admit to feeling something other than fine.

Which isn't to say that I miss the years themselves, miss clutching my birdlike bones together so that no one could hear them clattering against each other, because I don't. There is a comfort in being sad sometimes rather than scared all the time, and the relief that comes from the middle-class blandness of a visiting mild depression is something that few can understand. And it's only when I tell the stories, when I talk about being frightened and hungry and huddled in the closet of a trailer full of shouting that I remember what a luxury the distance is.

But the nostalgia is there, the quick longing for the stark blankness of terror. Being a child is easier than being a grownup, even if it's being a child in the dark corners and dank recesses. It's easier when the bogeymen are real than it is when they're you.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Cooking Thanksgiving dinner is about a six-hour project, mostly because I am way too OCD to let other people into the kitchen to help out. I get all, "No, wait! You're chopping those carrots wrong! Do it with a smoother wrist motion, so it doesn't make so much noise." I'm aspaz , and it's much easier to do it all myself than it is to figure out how to calm down and let go of whatever. It's why I'm so good at living alone, and everyone has to be good at something.

Besides, I honestly love entertaining, spending all day making things for the people that want to come and spend their holiday with me. I find that I'm most comfortable in my skin when I'm worrying about the comfort of other people.

My skin is lined with the softest razor blades but I try to rub everyone the other way, and the thought of your satisfied smile is like a biological highlighter, which is kinda the point. I read somewhere that they keep a pike in the fountains at Versailles to prevent the carp from getting fat and complacent. It keeps them on their toes, theoretically, and if fish had long-term memories they'd remember that and be scared and wary all the time. Only they don't, and that makes me think that the pike are wasted on the fish. So to speak.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope that your turkeys and nonturkey isotopes are delicious and your gatherings are friendly!

Monday, November 20, 2006

You know what the best part about not traveling for the holidays is? The not traveling part. Any other time of year I'll go anywhere gladly and make three new friends in each airport, but this time of Next year I'll have to spend at least Christmas with my family, but this year is another pseudo-orphan holiday season. Just the way I like them.

I bounced home in the rain tonight, inappropriately dressed for the weather but having a great time. I love all the other people who are walking in the rain, all the other people who won't fight the dark and the cold. (In the mornings I tend to feel differently.)

And the turkey is purchased and the fixings waiting to be fixed, and my apron is hung by the stove with care, and I'm so excited about Thanksgiving. It starts to rain and I get domestic, so it's real convenient for me that Thanksgiving falls after the rains start. I sort of dated a cook earlier this year and he taught me how to cut my round vegetables into rectangles, a skill I was missing for last year's feast. So that part should be interesting. You know, for me.

Anyway, this time of year makes me even more sentimental than usual, and I am tired and feeling worn through, like my skin is showing all of my secrets. I don't promise that I won't greet you with a hug that'll last just a little too long, that I won't forget to finish a thought mid-sentence. It's what happens to me in the fall.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

In the middle of the night the bridge was up, and I wondered who the people were, gliding silently on their boats in the dark and the cold and the rain.

In my head I had already leapt onto their boats like Errol Flynn onto a passing carriage or James Bond onto a speedboat, dressed in something high-waisted and pumps without a broken heel.

On the bus my fellow late-night passengers grumbled about the delay, muttering imprecations and looking pointedly at their watches. In front the driver hummed softly, in no hurry to get over the bridge.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

My internet connection has been occasionally hosed lately, which accounts, largely, for my general absence and haphazard posting. (It does not, unfortunately, account for all of my typos.) It's not something that I'm technically allowed to complain about, though, since what I really am is a wireless mooch.

Yep, there you have it. That's my dirty secret.

I am the sleepiest girl in King County these days, because sleeping is for suckers and I am no sucker. So I've been out instead, roaming the streets with packs of hungry wolves, drinking in bars, seeing bands, and frequently combining those last two. I need a haircut and a new family of sea monkeys, and possibly also to have a funeral for my plants.

Monday, November 13, 2006

I read a story the other day about an absentee ballot in Florida that may or may not have been sent in with some very valuable stamps as its postage. But the box that it's in is sealed now for 22 months, and so until then it's a little like Schrodinger's mailbox.

I like to think that the stamp in the box is the real thing, that something worth so much money has been stamped and reduced in value, and then closed up in a box. I like to think that the person who used the stamp had no idea what it was, that they were cleaning out their grandfather's desk and found the postage and though they'd be efficient and use it.

Mostly, I like to think of the people that will wait for it, that will spend the next two years thinking fondly of laying hands and eyes on this rare thing that they've always dreamed of. I hope that they won't be disappointed although I know that they will, because while we never know if our secret boxes hold a scary monster or a brick of gold, we do know that what we make with our hands will never match up with what we make with our brains. And so even if the stamp in the box is what they hope it is, it won't ever give them the satisfaction that they dream it will.

And there's something perfect in that.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Sometime this weekend I will buy a new couch. (This will thrill all the people who are very tired of hearing me talk about doing such a thing.) If you were me--and I know you're not but pay attention anyway because it might be your turn next--then this would be a very big commitment for you. It makes me very anxious, spending all of this money on a piece of furniture that someone'll just spill a glass of wine on anyway. But the other option is being stuck with this ripped brown monstrosity forever, and I just can't take it anymore.

Which is more than you ever wanted to know about my furniture situation, but I can't be cool all the time.

Thanksgiving!! is coming up. I am, as expected, so freaking excited and gearing up to cook way too much food for some currently nebulous number of people. I would make an awesome housewife, especially if I had a functioning dishwasher and a little robot vacuum.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I walked down 2nd last night, hood up, hands jammed in my pockets, leaning stubbornly against the wind. Half a block in front of me strolled a couple cuddled under one green umbrella, his hand striking sparks as it hovered at the level of her waist. Her belt was black and studded just like the red one I was wearing, and the slant of his back said that if he were just a little braver he would hook his thumb over the top of it.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

We spent all of the time gathering all of the facts, only to find out, once we had the facts spread out on the kitchen table like a puzzle we had borrowed from someone, that it wasn't the facts that were important. It turned out that it was the harvesting process we were meant to be paying attention to, and that the facts themselves were only a byproduct of the finding out.


In my head we go to your old cabin to talk about it, a cabin that outside of my head and in the middle of Georgia has long since been reclaimed by the woods. It is always in my head that our conversations work the best because in there you don't always have to be right and I don't always have to be defensive. (In my head we are considerate of each other and slightly British.) And there for the first time we ignore both distance and ire and come to a delicate agreement.

And outside of my head I miss the taste of menthol cigarettes and the creeping smell of vintage bourbon splashed on the upholstery by a careless gesture, both long since reclaimed by the years.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Regarding the ongoing disagreement between myself and gravity, well, I'm afraid I have to say that gravity is winning. This time it was aided by my very low blood pressure, and now I have one very busted up toe.
I will not surrender. Gravity, I will get you yet.