Wednesday, July 31, 2013

a gregarious pandemonium of parrots

This morning, while taking a stroll with Ella and Rose, I saw two kiddos, probably 4 and 2 years old.  I said good morning.  The older girl replied with a good morning, and the younger girl, who was standing behind her sister, pulled the pacifier out of her mouth and said HI while waving enthusiastically.

It took every bit of my small reserve of stoicism (which closely compares to that of a gregarious pandemonium of parrots) to very calmly say hi followed by a slightly exuberant wave.

I am completely aware that my eagerness and enthusiasm has the tendency to scare the peewaddins out of cats and children, but today I overcame that enthusiasm.  Well, at least until I turned the corner.  Then I did a little dance because they were just so STINKIN' CUTE, and they said good morning to me.

Towards the end of our walk I noticed several kids in funny hats setting up a table in front of a house.  LEMONADE!  Then the strangest thing happened.  The parents brought out a giant stack of white boxes and placed them on the table.  Huh?  That's when I noticed what the hats said.

Krispy Kremes.

The kids were setting up a Krispy Kreme stand.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

but I don't blame them

A little James Blake for you

I Never  Learnt To Share

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Modern Book of Stretching

Do you feel like your stretches are antiquated?

Does the struggle to touch your toes bore you?

Do you spend most of your time preening your pretend ostrich feathers as you bumble around on stilts?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then I have the book for you!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

aliens and poltergeists part II

So you know those aliens that tried to communicate with me via edamame?

Today they attempted further communication.  This time they came through the sticky label printer at work.  How do I know that aliens are behind this?  Easy, I don’t understand what happened.  The printer delivered a perfect label both before and after the message.

Their message, while not entirely clear, is this:

I think this is code for we have captured all your letters and numbers and in no time will be learning how to put them together so that we can give you a better message.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

experience without reflection is only half of what it can be

In the same week I read both an interview with John O’Donohue in The Sun and one of his poems in an anthology.  I was incredibly inspired and set out to find everything he ever wrote.  It turns out that he wrote a lot.  In my quest to read and absorb every little word that he ever wrote down, I happened upon what I feel is my greatest find since stumbling upon Sand and Foam by Kahlil Gibran in a flea market back in 2002. 

My find is an audiobook, but I plan on acquiring the book as well.  

The audiobook is a compilation of blessings for all facets of life and death including home, freedom, water and addiction.  The first blessing came to me in the middle of a workday shuffle.  It was a blessing “For the family and friends of suicide.”

I had to stop working and find solace in the restroom:

And you know there are no strong people in the world.  There are only people who have not been tested.

Since then I can expect one or two blessings to pop up when I shuffle my music.  Each one inevitably sends me to the restroom where I try to push all my molecules back into a human shape so I can pull the door open and pretend like flowers are not blooming from my earbuds as their soft leaves test the strength of my lips.

Did I ever tell you about Hans Zimmer’s True Romance?  If I have, then I am certain you will want to hear it again.  If not, you must know that this is one of my most prized little nuggets of serendipity.  

One night, long before Robert and I were officially dating, I had Hans Zimmer’s The Wings Of A Film playing in my CD player.  It was set to repeat True Romance continuously.  Robert called and I answered the phone - a land line that happened to be attached to a wall on the other side of my studio apartment.  What started out as a hello turned into hours of stories, and in the background of this conversation, playing uproariously but quietly, was True Romance.  Because I did not want to leave Robert’s voice for even a second the song continued to play the entire conversation.  It has become a very special song because of this conversation.  Whenever I hear it I am instantly consumed by the stories we shared that evening over 8 years ago, stories that we repeat endlessly without questioning their repetitiousness.  Rather than growing thinner with use, the threads of our stories are growing stronger, gathering strength and vibrancy with each retelling.  Our memories have formed a hammock.  We are carried by the motion of our words.

While listening to my music today another blessing slipped in, this time a blessing for an occasion of celebration.  As I paused to listen wholeheartedly I heard: experience without reflection is only half of what it can be.  Two songs later True Romance demonstrated this beautifully.

Perhaps our devices will never stretch beyond their inanimate barriers.  The earbuds in my ears will never find a burgeoning heart beneath the beats.  My phone may hold the face of my father, but it will never draw a breath.  We can talk to our gadgets with the same sincerity we reserve for our families, but they will only respond if we give ourselves to them. 

However, I can’t help but wonder how a blessing can shout into the black hole of data and pull from it, a response.

I leave you with True Romance.

Friday, July 26, 2013

some incredibly funky looking bird acting tough as shit

When I dance to this I feel like I'm some incredibly funky looking bird acting tough as shit.

I am probably supremely wrong about the vibes of this song.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

a jewel and milk dud encrusted pillow

It is official.  After much deliberation and angst and laughter I have chosen my favorite piece from Jim Gaffigan's Mr. Universe.

Actually I knew the moment I heard it that I would never be the same.  It was a moment comparable in majesty to 1. The first time I heard a HaHa bird. 2. The day I realized I could gobble like a turkey. And of course 3. My first kiss.

I hereby bestow upon you (taking track number 10 from a jewel and milk dud encrusted pillow):


Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Over the weekend Robert, Rachel (Robert's cousin) and I went to St. Louis.  We did just about everything a person can possibly do in St. Louis - zoo, art museum, the loop, chain of rocks bridge, sweetie pies, library tour at Central and the city museum (everyone's favorite).  We crammed more in three days than I normally do in a month.
Rachel is 12, that tricky age where you are a child and still find crawling through tunnels in old warehouse and eating ice cream for breakfast greatly appealing, but because you are trying to gather independence and let the world know that you are mature, you poopoo any idea that makes you look silly.  You poopoo it until you see other mature looking people doing it.  People that obviously spend a majority of their time paying bills HA.  It was quite interesting watching Rachel briefly roll her eyes at us before she realized we were going to leave her ass behind if she didn't get a move on.  She's a great kid, really.  No, scratch that.  She's a great person.
Everyone in Robert's family is very emotionally reserved.  They could be excited or ready to knock the sno off my cone, but I never know this.  I can only guess, and while I'm guessing I'm turning into an emotional billboard, partly because I am a little insecure around stoic people, but mostly because I am an emotional billboard.  I grew up in a very emotionally loud family.  We shared.  Not in that cutesy sharing way, no, it wasn't like that at all.  We shared everything.  If my mom had a bad day at work we heard about it.  If we were excited about going out for donuts the walls would shake as we raced to the door.  If one of my brothers felt a fart coming and knew I was in the house somewhere, they would find me and all hell would break loose.  We thought nothing of woowooing (armpit tickling) each other in Wal Mart.  My mom is a grandmother now, but if you know her you understand that you better start running if the woowoo look comes over her.
I remember a family vacation.  I was 11.  Scott was 12.  Mom drove us up to Chicago to visit Robin and Aunt Betsy.  While we were there we were rear-ended.  Scott and I were completely absorbed in what we were doing in the back (probably playing a silent game of elbow jabbing) and only knew something was wrong because we heard a very frantic my babies my babies.  My loudmouth mother, who I thought at the time was really annoying for interrupting whatever it was that I was doing, was loudly expressing her concern.  Don't worry though.  I now find it very touching.  Please don't woowoo me mom. : )
If Robert's family had been in a similar situation, everyone would have just sat there and waited for assistance.  In fact, I have been in an accident with a couple members of his family.  You know what they did?  They very calmly picked pieces of glass from their clothes while inquiring about the weather outside.  **CRASH** Is everyone all right? Yes. **pick glass off clothes and quietly wait for assistance.**  Meanwhile, I am grabbing my purse.  I am throwing open the door.  I am hollering about how f***ing cold it is.  I am talking about the titties of witches and how we are going to lose ours if we don't get our asses off the highway.
Back at the car:
As you can tell, Robert's family is very quiet.  I can only assume that their emotions are buried beneath layers upon layers of stern looks and hushes.  I have to remind myself that the short little one word answers are code for HOLY CRAP YES LET'S GO GET SOME ICE CREAM!!! And while I am always talking, always making noises and singing, and have been surrounded by other loudmouths, not everyone is raised to be so expressive, not everyone's expressiveness is encouraged or praised.
So, when we asked Rachel if she had a good time, and her shoulders lifted and she mumbled yes, I totally heard YES THAT WAS SO MUCH FUN LET'S DO IT AGAIN!!!  But then I told myself, you heard a yes and it doesn't need to be anything else.

Here are a few pictures!

We ate many amazing things including a gogi bowl from Seoul Taco and ice cream from the loop

Surely it was destiny that I found a shirt that looked just like my ice cream cone.

A picture of us hanging out with the elephants

The City Museum 

Stopped at Dunaway Books of course

Now, we are home.  Trying to make up for three days of lost cuddling.  If a cuddle is lost, it must be found!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Damien Rice


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Bert & Ernie

Hands down this is the best New Yorker cover ever.  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I am filing up this beautiful blank space because blank spaces are not allowed

I have been waking up, riding my bike to work, working like crazy (summer madness), riding my bike to a place to write, writing for awhile, coming home, getting ready for the next day and going to sleep.

Yesterday I told a coworker that I was moving so fast that I wasn't enjoying my job.  This rarely happens.  Typically I enjoy most tasks and am thrilled to be so closely involved in the life of books and people who love books.  But occasionally, I find myself moving too fast to enjoy the library, or a simple bike ride or a cup of tea.  I am in race mode, which puts me in frantic mode.  Suddenly I realize that I am not living, and instead of sitting down quietly to let myself catch up, I try to fill the quiet moments with what I believe are things that I am not doing enough of because I am not living enough.  

Do you ever take a perfectly good moment and fill it with everything but stillness?

Well, let's give ourselves a moment.  Take the commas out of the moment.  Surrender the words.