Tuesday, March 30, 2010


HI, Its me.
Totally sorry for betraying you in said dream. I mean maybe I found out they killed dolphins and i just couldn't take it anymore. Hard to say.

I'm here with the thorne. So far the day is going fast. We had a lovely play time outside, now she's napping, as last time i may have gotten her down a little too late- but sometimes you just get locked on the course of the day but still feel compelled to go through with it even though you know its not the best for anyone. On a sidenote dans is very good at snacks. Cut orange bellpeppers, those addictive veggie strips, sparkling water. Total hostess points... but back to the playtime part. There were these squirrels, one small one at first eating nuts they dug up from the grass. And it only seemed to take a cautious look at us. And then a husky, must have been male came around, chasing the little one and it seemed straight out of that animated sword and the stone... if only there was a talking grump of an owl as our mascot. I almost feared for thornes safety at one point as she was standing btw them and them not 5ft from her. But i was ready. I would've dropped my phone to get to her in time. Because that's how much i care.

This is honestly not at all how i thought this post was going to go. But you know, why bring up japan. (Because its totally awkward to talk about). But can i complain, about ANTM for 2seconds. The only commercials are about cervical cancer... oh and soft skin commercials. It's killing the popcorn light fair is all i'm saying. I may have to do my nails or eat more veggie strips. Hmph. And thornes been sleeping for an hour already! Rock.



I had a dream last night we were traveling together in Japan (studying? what?) and you were filled with melancholy and eventually decided to leave the country without me. Gasp.

What gives?


Monday, March 29, 2010


Our flowers are looking fairly lovely; here they are (see enclosed photos) after this morning’s rain. Somehow the flat of snapdragons included one of every color: white, yellow, magenta, orange, pink, red, and some others that will be a surprise when they open. And creeping phlox is just plain rad. I want to do the whole yard in creeping phlox, instead of a lawn, but I can’t get J.Lo to agree. Also, the garden is planted with eggplant, green beans, squash medley, spinach, green onions cherry and roma tomatoes and cucumbers. And the side yard now houses another long planter with accompanying trellis, which will grow jasmine and lantana, all purchased at the arboretum, where K.Lo frolicked amongst the giant mushrooms, et al. (And where I also managed to sidesweep K.Lo with our red wagon, at which the crowd gasped. Sigh.)  It was a highly awesome accomplishment on Saturday by J.Lo, and I’m sad to say I didn’t help at all. I was inside on my face, sleeping.

I think I’ve recounted to you all the ways in which I loathe being a girl sometimes, but lately there are one or two days that sap me completely, make me so tired I could puke. How is that fair, really. Granted, I am finally also crashing from an eventful month. And yes, I did meet said deadline! At least one of them, anyway, the one for which you’ll have to cross your fingers and/or pray. And the other one is on Wednesday and will be just fine.

Somehow I have plans already for every single Sunday in April, and I’m not sure how I feel about that yet. The real question is, do I squeeze in a yard sale on a random and hopefully sunny Saturday, too? Or do I feel tired just thinking about that.

I did listen to a second audiobook on the way home last Sunday, the one about the week in the woods, because it was narrated by Peter from Office Space and how could I resist. It was good, although I missed the British accent of the other gem we heard, as well as phrases such as “hot, single tear” and “poppycock.” And let’s not forget the winning similes:

“…taste fear, cold and metallic in my mouth.”

“…like an ingĂ©nue in a bad play.”

Or, my favorite horrible paradox:

“…cool, tepid water.”


Last week was also Ben Folds playing with the NC Symphony: a simply fantastic birthday present, all in all. Including the preceding meal (Spicy Chang’s Chicken) and dessert (banana spring roll w/ coconut ice cream, caramel, and fresh fruit! hot/cold, sweet/salt!). Although your presence was rather magical, too. And the birthday signage, the daffodils, the Napoleon Dynamite card and the clementine jack-o-lantern, complete with representative toothpick candle. I carry these details in my heart.





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Hello you. Whereever you are. Sure i'm coming down from being a fly on your wall to being wrenched back to my own world and not so much flyish but a sad blob. There's no food in the fridge either. I should probably go shopping. I did manage to buy like 3 boxes of popsicles. And i had a last packet of oatmeal for breakfast. I'm up unusually early. So in this time i've already watered the pots and am watering a portion of the yard and rescued 4 slowgrowing poppies from the mutant snapdragons and have come up with a list of to-do 4 spring as the garden goes fulltilt. Also i need to clean the garage. But first things first- those necklaces, a whole bunch of necklaces. Once i finish the last one of the easter faire, i'll have an almost 2 month break before the next ones are due. Give me a chance to catch up on the other ones. Not related to the next or the first, or the last or whichever, but ones I still need to do. So many I have that it is a wonder what exactly I've been doing with my time. Doing the warrior dash and going to Chi- that's what. I know that's next. And by next i mean in 2 wks.

Anyway, what else to say, i'll just keep rambling. Did you finish everything you were going to finish? I'm listening to some lovely chanting, haunting the halls type melodies. It's called the 11,000 virigns: Chants for the feast of st. ursula. I don't know who ursula is but i can only hope the food was good, because the singing is so sweet and sad. I am not sure whether it pulls me to death or to drink in the sweet sunshine of life.


Friday, March 26, 2010

My dearest penelope,

I have never been so glad to be back home in recent memory. No slight of course to your hosting. It felt as if I had not been gone that long. Or as if it was a place I frequently visited. Such a testament to letters and pictures to breed such comfort and familiarity to a place. It is possibly a credit to the expansive nature of time this trip also or all the twists and turns that made it stretch so far. Perhaps it made me a little thin. I don't know. I don't think that was quite it though. I got all the sleep I needed, I had time to myself, my own adventures, my own splurges and withholdings. I was fed and watered regularly. But I found with relief my former life- the moon overhead as the bus rolled me home. I had tried not to count the minutes as we traversed and seeing the worm moon was a happy grace. There were small mercies to every difficulty, the screaming kid that needed to be sedated, my spacious seat and good movie to watch, dad locking me out of the house but someone to bring me home and the dogs to wake him up. I love california. I love being home. I had never thought my 'being at home anywhere' could be a negative, but perhaps wunderlust needs to be built up until the longing has you itching and gasping so that you can leave a place for a month, months and think nothing whatever about coming home to your own desk and bed, so aquainted had you got and how much you wanted to be elsewhere.

But this time, oh desk, i missed you, oh garden! how in bloom, how at the tip of take over, oh purring cat! oh car!... that or some grief sends you in need of rescue, of familiarity, of recentering and retreat. And I'm glad my home is that. That i look at the mess fondly- to love again my lists and my routine. And here I go yoga, and swimming and necklace making...

It is highly possible I could be emotionally allergic to certain places. I will have to see. For instance I had el pollo loco and there i was with a light rash and hives and it just looked from the mirror that my chest was reddish as if i'd been in the sun but under the magnifying mirror it showed the pattern of discontent broadly and quite plainly. Sometimes it doesn't take much and sometimes the toxicity builds until your joints hurt. I always think, whenever my heel hurts, that my colon is unhappy. Muriel said that to me once. Heel pain is linked to the colon. So whenever I step, I say, oh colon! behave! stop your aching! What have i eaten! What have I done to make you sooo unhappy! And believe it or not, there may be a correlation. Sometimes it does not take much to signal that something is deeply wrong and has always been.

But as it is, I'll send this letter off for now, out into space for you to receive. After all I have my lists, and things to return. I'm out of hangers also. And lolly needs a bath. This is how I found my garden- on the verge of takeover. Somethings need to be watched closely lest the vines choke all the other plants in their wake- but let that go. More later.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Hello you. Whatcha up to in NYC, other than eating dinosaurs and lamenting the lack of handi-wipes? Did you find some whimsy?

I have a vague rattle in my chest that may be invented. The fish tank is vaguely drizzly sounding, which is how it all starts – you now well now the plight of the rushing water, the dreaded cleaning chore that looms. And my phone battery, which was charged just yesterday and barely used today, is down to 2 bars. What up with that.

This week is going as predicted, which is to say that it’s crazy-ridiculous-busy in a time of hormonal strife. I’m requesting strength and similar good thoughts and vibes and somehow I may pull it all off. Details, schmetails, you don’t need ‘em. I’ll let you know how it all turns out.

J.Lo bought a bag of clementines that are tasty, but my hand is a magnet for pulling out the few that are rotten and moldy. There’s a piece of cake left in the fridge that I can’t decide whether to eat. The kids ask about you, ask to play the Wii even more and K.Lo seems still to be processing that I was gone for a few days. Today she said, “I missed you, Mommy.” She also says “You’re the best mommy, ever.” Which is super-sweet and cute and feel-good until she reverses it.

I mean, obviously it’s the great mystery of the Universe, but I can’t wrap my brain around the idea of “gone.” Like how is that even possible. Or real. Like the fish at the aquarium – I just don’t get it. Occasionally, my brain travels down some rabbit hole, wondering. Sometimes the train of thought is panicky, sometimes not.

I’m fully adjusted by now to DST, but does that make it right?

Oh, another thing we missed was yoga. Sadness. I think you would have enjoyed bodyflow. And that yoga mat strap is a wonderment, I tell you. Why I didn’t spend $9 10 months ago is beyond me. It’s like a purse! I don’t even notice it. So much better than N.Lo + 2 blankies in one arm, and 2 mats in the other.

I want to work on my arm muscles, but feel no motivation really whatsoever.

Also, the plants still look lovely. The creeping phlox so far promises to be *rad.* Ben Folds and perhaps PF Changs await – 2 more days!

until next time,


Sunday, March 21, 2010


i'm at the olga, which i'll have to discuss at length more later- though what are the chances of coming from olga's funeral to a building called the olga? that's the question. i tried to load photos but it didn't work on j's computer so we'll have to hold off on a discussion of byzantine catholicism. for now i can say before i forget that it was odd i had two funeral appropriate outfits in my bag. it's a good thing i'm in a grey kind of mood? and that i must have been psychically prepared for the journey. and being in NY is having slipped into a completely different reality than where i was with you. it is strange that both of you are so physically so far away. i don't understand it. it seems unfair.

and though joanna does live in the gentrified ghetto she has a beautiful view and a pretty sweet 2 room apartment. her brother is over already hanging curtain rods and we're deciding on where the art goes. i had to fix her necklace which was misbehaving and her shadowbox things came unglued... so best i am here to fix them. but i really should have a few must dos before i leave new york right? besides visiting starbucks and walking through central park. done and done. i have 2 solid more days and then another 1/2 day. i'm thinking the frick museum or maybe that tenament? museum? or something- but that's it really... hummm. surely i can not sit with a laptop overlooking the baseball diamond and smattering of trees and buildings as far as the eye can see with a glass of wine in my hand, and my feet kicked up admiring my pedicure. dilemmas dilemmas.

ok, my mind has melted in the haze of fabric choices and thirst.

more later from the front.


You and J.Lo gave me an exceptionally hard time while I was online birthday purse shopping, BUT I persevered. And so the mystery purse shall be revealed. It’s a bit ridiculous, even I’ll admit, but I kind of love it regardless. It’s a *fancy* purse! For *fancy* occasions. I feel you’ll approve.




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Saturday, March 20, 2010

dear m,

Hello, friend! I am currently somewhere along Rt. 17, not quite halfway home. Watching Grey’s and ProRun online didn’t work out, either due to spotty internets, or else my need for a RAM upgrade, which lurks in the background. So I’m moving on to Plan B, which is to set up my portable DVD player w/ accompanying chick flick. Which is probably better anyway, because now I can blog to you.

So thank you for making the journey. I think I managed to sweeten up my sour pickleness, with the exception of my minor meltdown after missing the W-B exit. But you know. It was 10+ hrs in. Less than an hour before visitation. Stressful. However I do appreciate your endless optimism. The packing of several otherwise unthoughtof snacks. The wacky pictures. The terribly awesome audiobook adventure. Your calm presence at ensuing services and ceremonies. It seems you were destined to come along, and not just any friend would be perfect for this job. But you were. Funeral outfits aside.

Things we missed this week: 1. Scranton sign – I’ll make up for it at some point. I still can’t believe we didn’t see a million, much less one? It makes no sense, they are practically the same town. 2. Ghost walk. 3. My church, both service and the labyrinth. (And the guy! arg.)

Yet we sort of filled those checklist requirements as we encountered death and church. And a church that was even out of my realm of experience, Byzantine Catholic. Totally hard core. … I was going to process a little more right there, but then lost the thread. Some major decompression is slated for this upcoming week, clearly.

So… we’ll do the labyrinth nexttime? In fact I’m sure between now and then I’ll go myself and report back.

Love my purple toes, by the way. I don’t think they’ve ever actually looked so good. And aside from the awesomeness that was my first-ever pedicure, it was funny that you noticed the shrine in there, while I looked around for signs of trafficking. Like automatically this is where each of our minds went.

And I do get credit this time for finally showing you the Atlantic Ocean, followed almost instantly of course by the demand for dolphins. *eyeroll*

Release the Grackle!

Our Roadtrip Captain’s Log must be posted. I have about a thousand things to catch up on, writing assignment-wise. I had big plans for tonight in that respect, but um, brain sort of = mush, so … yeah.

When do we start planning LA 2010/2011?

miss you already,



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Friday, March 19, 2010

Dear Pentalope,

The bags are packed, the snacks are at the ready- granted my bag is way smaller than it um, used to be so i may have to wear like 8 pairs of clothes when i do fly back. We've got 3 books on cd, an ipod full of music, club soda in a cooler- and my nails are freshly painted. What we need is a list on why roadtrips are awesome, despite the destination- remember, screenplay- that screaming into the abyss or standing by the sea or staring ponderously at all the weird people... its the journey that matters.

But let that go, lets be worried about my now spaztic onset- the dropped eggs this morning, the spilled water (twice), the gash on my ass... The early rise time which should theoretically be ok since i only got 6 hours of sleep last night and am trying to go to bed earlish tonight... i say all is going to go well... we'll ponder that i actually had two funeral appropriate funeral outfits in my bag and at the ready, one randomly purchased here before we knew we were going and then that weird coincidental ponderance of yours- it seems a thing meant to be.

We Love You Sour Pickles
here's the list so far:
-welcome to scranton picture opp
-the dundee awards picture opp
-time with mendacious priceless
-snack food
-fizzy water
-going to take shots in her honor
-discussions of death, wishlists and celebrating life
-no whining children
-eat whatever we want, whenever we want
-visitation of unseen states, non-specified
-utilization of new laptop bag and fancy birthday purse
-opportunity to sing 'life is a highway'
-opportunity to sing ' do you like pina coladas...' ("escape")!
-taking on a roadtrip 'persona'
-observation of family and all the personalities there in
-traversing the oldest orogenc belt in the continental US
-1/2 hour from the origins of penelope
-seeing the newish bean m.ro
-pictures opp's of us aplenty

--- uh, allright, bed time. more from the front when an internet connection surfaces.
signing off-

godspeed and travel mercies.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Dear Penelope,

You know how i get things locked into my head about experiences and things to do and checking things off a list- i had to. It just seemed the sort of thing I've wanted to know about. And you know i have a hidden, not so hidden fascination with being in the military. And jlo was the perfect brother figure man guy person to show me how to shoot. And I did 'em proud. And he said, how can you come to the south and not shoot? Perhaps also, i'm owning my republican land possessing roots. Right to bear arms, and rabblerabblerabble.

It was all a very strange affair. This care and keeping of guns. Of course jlo was like, well you'll probably be aiming for an intruder, up close, like this- i was like um? aiming? at? an intruder? what? Possibly I am just getting in touch with my inner warrior self. If i under extreme circumstances had to take arms and go into uh? war or uh something? You know with the impending governmental collapse and all. Or I suddenly found myself working for CTU. Also guns are so abstracted in my mind as something on tv or classified for use of the gangmembers on the wire, or of course those video games i like to play- it's not like i've ever been shot, like i've been cut. So automatically knives are dangerous, but are guns? They are loud. And obviously on tv, much damage is inflicted by people wielding guns- forensic files for instance is great at illustrating the point- down to trajectory and words like 45,22,9m, and magnum and shellcasing, kickbacks, blast, and internal damage. I had an uncle for instance who killed himself with a gun- and i think did he really know what it was going to do? I wonder. Or was it just an ownership of power and spending it regardless of what it leaves everyone else with. But would i ever think of owning a gun? These sort of glintingly toy like evil things of mass destruction? They don't seem real like fish don't seem real. They're that far away from my world of bits, baubles and green.

Maybe? Using one you gain respect for it. I don't know if using one makes you treat it casually. I think the reverse. Because when you hear the gun, like when i went into the range, it was a sound that kept making me jump, and when i fired it, i felt exhausted after a while. The constant, boom,boom,boom against my body. I will say I have pretty excellent aim for having never shot a gun at 25ft, but for a rifle when i was 8 and 9. (and of course, thanks archery) But then as you keep going and the small pop pop pop of the 22 seems easy, and the boom of the 9m as it throws back your hands at every discharge- it does get familiar and it does get just a bit easy, and just a tiny bit empowering. Because as idle as it seems, its oddly physical. In charge, in control, focus, repetition, a goal and the might of a gun going off in your hands. The sound and the force, and you feel empty and cleared of something. And if i ever aimed it at someone I don't know if i'd quite be prepared for the consequence. Unless of course they were zombies or we were in the apocalypse- then all bets are off.


Man, what a night. I think i may have pushed it a little bit with the little dipper but it was worth it. The irish coffee, decadent, may have had wheat in it, in how they process the whiskey?, or perhaps the sky high cream she put on it, or the dark chocolate and caramel swirling awesomeness, or the cheese with basil and garlic and all the delicious fruit- i couldn't sleep and so did some emailing, ate some yogurt, took another lactaid thing, and talked to my stomach about what i expected of it, and then when i got up later to go to the bathroom, all full up with liquor and fruit, i took a tumble down the treacherous stairs and have a nice gash of pain on my ass. But whatever. Still, worth it. Unrelatedly I think the dogs have a rolicking good time on my bed when we're gone. I suppose I don't mind it- but the nerve i tell you! My cacoonlike lovely bed. It's not its fault i couldn't count the stairs as i stumbled down,down,down. And lets remember the little dipper and the parking space right out front just as we were about to despair, and the bubbly waitress who likes to make strong coffee and partys in vegas. And all our ponderings on how awesome life is and how strange and sometimes foreboding and puzzling. But here we are nonetheless, in this space and time, eating fondue, and falling down stairs.