Thursday, May 31, 2007

NOON by Louise Glück

They're not grown up - more like a boy and girl, really.
School's over. It's the best part of the summer, when it's still beginning -
the sun's shining, but the heat isn't intense yet.
And freedom hasn't gotten boring.

So you can spend the whole day, all of it, wandering in the meadow.
The meadow goes on indefinitely, and the village keeps getting more and
more faint -

It seems a strange position, being very young.
They have this thing everyone wants and they don't want-
but they want to keep it anyway; it's all they can trade on.

When they're by themselves like this, these are the things they talk about.
How time for them doesn't race.
It's like the reel breaking at the movie theater. They stay anyway -
mainly, they just don't want to leave. But till the reel is fixed
the old one just gets popped back in,
and all of a sudden you're back to long ago in the movie -
the hero hasn't even met the heroine. He's still at the factory,
he hasn't begun to go bad. And she's wandering around the docks, already bad.
But she never meant it to happen. She was good, then it happened to her,
like a bag pulled over her head.

The sky's completely blue, so the grass is dry.
They'll be able to sit with no trouble.
They sit, they talk about everything - then they eat their picnic.
They put the food on the blanket, so it stays clean.
They've always done it this way; they take the grass themselves.

The rest - how two people can lie down on the blanket -
they know about it but they're not ready for it.
They know people who've done it, as a kind of game or trial-
then you say no, wrong time, I think I'll just keep being a child.
But your body doesn't listen. It knows everything now,
it says you're not a child, you haven't been a child for a long time.

Their thinking is, stay away from change. It's an avalanche -
all the rocks sliding down the mountain, and the child standing underneath
just gets killed.

They sit in the best place, under the poplars.
And they talk - it must be hours now, the sun's in a different place.
About school, about people they both know,
about being adult, about how you knew what your dreams were.

They used to play games, but that's stopped now- too much touching.
They only touch each other when they fold the blanket.

They know this in each other.
That's why it isn't talked about.
Before they do anything like that, they'll need to know more -
in fact, everything that can happen. Until then, they'll just watch
and stay children.

Today she's folding the blanket alone, to be safe.
And he looks away-he pretends too lost in thought to help out.

They know that at some point you stop being children, and at that point
you become strangers. It seems unbearably lonely.

When they get home to the village, it's nearly twilight.
It's been a perfect day; they talk about this,
about when they'll have a chance to have a picnic again.

They walk through the summer dusk,
not holding hands but telling each other everything.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Wal-Mart is in Brazil. But this week, the employees are in Bentonville, AR. I know, because I heard them stomping, clapping, and chanting a Wal-Mart cheer in the Northwest Arkansas airport the other day. The entire facility shook with the raw force of the Wal-Martness of it all.

Fayetteville, AR is very pretty. There were indigo buntings all about. There were nice bookshops. My son really, really wants a Razorbacks t-shirt. Leave it to that boy to find some sort of retail need, even in the heart of the Ozarks.

In other news, I got glasses today. I don't know if they are sexy-secretary enough for my husband, but I'll soon find out. They are not what I expected to get, but they were certainly the first choice of everyone in the store. They are, however, BIFOCALS! But those are now called "progressive lenses." Come on, call them what they are. I can take it.

Friday, May 25, 2007

In other news...

Have you tried the Buffalo Chicken Wings-flavor Goldfish? I can't find any reference to them on the Internet. Did I dream it up? The intense, spicy flavor? The lick-your-fingers saltiness?

Also, I bought some deodorant and won't use yours anymore honey. I got some kind of Kuka Coconut scent. The web site says that my "scent expression" is as addictive as Caribbean folk music (what is Caribbean folk music? is it not politically correct to use the word reggae?). I was just excited to have a pina colada party in my pits.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

From "The Tail Section":

"Okay Des, why did you stand there with your mouth agape when you could have high tailed it into the water and brought poor Charlie an air tank?

Maybe that is exactly what happened! Wasn't that the song Charlie was 'writing' playing on Jack's radio when he pulled up to the funeral parlor?"
So, not Locke or Ben!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

It's not that I don't have anything to blog about, it's that I don't know where to start!

My daughter's soccer team won the championship game for their age level. And a good thing, since the coach a. found religion right before the game and has us pray and b. he only left the best players in the game at the end. Did I agree with these strategies? Not really. I also don't agree that the team should rent a gas-guzzler to drive around contributing to greenhouse gasses for two hours.

At age 8.

But I'm glad she won and it was fun to be on the championship team, if only this one time. Another such victory would be unlikely in her lifetime, but would be amazing....

Are you listening to me, Atlanta Braves?

I was highly disappointed with the 24 finale, much like the rest of the country. Actually, I was relieved that Jack didn't die. At least die during an awesome season!

Tonight is the Lost finale and I'm highly excited. Our church has an important vote on moving forward with an expensive and somewhat controversial renovation project. I'm going, mainly to SUPPORT MY HUSBAND, who has worked so hard and did me so proud when he was chair of a starter committee for this project. But I will have to leave at my witching hour - sometime before Lost starts and when my children grow tired of sitting on a hard floor watching some poorly animated Christian video and need to get home to rest up for bureaucratic testing.

And also the weather? It is hot and dry and I don't like it.

Back to perky happiness tomorrow, I hope.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Grocery store breakdown:

My local Harris Teeter:
friendly, friendly people...I love them all including Tim the bagger who calls me "Gorgeous" or "Pretty Lady", and Miss Doris who is sweet despite what all else she has going on and I suspect it is a lot as she is raising her granddaughter. Expensive, but small, which I like, and beginning to carry quite a bit of organic stuff. I hate their deli and rarely go to it.

My local Food Lion:
bleak, full of trans fats and high fructose corn syrup and no produce to speak of. But convenient and cheap as all hell. I frequent it in the summertime when funds dry up at our house. (The life of the preschool teacher and the self-employed dude - it sucks to be us)

Whole Foods:
I'm always on guard the moment I enter that store. The employees are mercurial, the aisles always unfamiliar, the choices overwhelming. But I go, I sometimes find a bargain (there is no cheaper, better milk and you can get an iced tea whilst you shop), and I can pop in the yarn store, wine store, and book store during a visit.

Fresh Market:
my guilty pleasure. A sample of coffee, classical music, and pretty flowers. I am lured by the creature comforts it offers. I don't think their meat is good at all. I think their baked goods are stale. I never find a dinner for the fam that is reasonably priced. But I go there, enticed by their siren song, at least once a week. There I said it, I've confessed.

Big. Bulky. Reminds me of when my children were tiny and women accosted me for not having a hat, blanket, long pants on that baby. Depressing. Even seeing the word "Kroger" gives me the heebies.

Trader Joe's:
Hello, gorgeous. Come over to Raleigh, won't you? This chain is so.....HAWAIIAN. Their foods are so tasty. The store is so manageable. Lots of white people shop there, but I never said I wasn't white. The crab cakes! The simmer sauces! The meringue cookies! I always take my own bags and they treat me like the Saviour of the Known World. That said, I can't get maxipads there. But it doesn't matter. No, Trader Joe's, it doesn't matter. I think I will always love you. We'll make this long-distance thing work.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

YouTube - Baby Jesus Prayer in "Talladega Nights"

There's no shame in watching it again.

Sickie went back to school today. He is a good sort. And frankly, much better behaved when sick. But we like his effervescent crazy self too.

Lost continues to be crazy good, and last night made me cry, but there is much on the Internet to read about all that and I won't contribute any more to it.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I long to post the picture I took on Mother's Day and to tell you of the charming sentiments I received and compliments, etc.

But instead I want you to feel my pain. The pain I feel upon urinating. Why? And more importantly, why now? A UTI! Do adults even get those? Ouch.

And feel the pain of my son, whose vomiting has stopped but whose appetite has not returned and who insisted he must go on the field trip wherein the class hiked 2 miles in the sun, and who had to be carried (by his endocrinically-challenged mother) up a long gravel trail to the car.

Also, my son, he has emotional pain. He had written a darling missive to his mom entitled "Happy Mother's Day" that was stolen on the bus and then passed around to a bunch of ugly, stinky, wart-ridden girls on the bus who taunted him by saying he loved his mommy. He ran all the way home and hid in the bushes for 10 minutes after the bus ride. And we are not riding the bus this week (that is, we won't ride it if he ever goes back to school). Double ouch.

The pain affects my poor daughter, who has decided to go ahead and try out for an advanced soccer training program. This thing is expensive, it feels like it is so NOT us, it involves four days of tryouts??, and I just don't know, nor does she, if it is the right thing for her. Is it? How will we ever know? I hardly think she is the next Mia Hamm. But what if she really is?

The pain of the checkbook and its empty, gnawing feeling is one you've heard before and may be experiencing yourself this lovely month post-taxes. OUCH. OUCH. OUCH.

I'm going to call my gynecologist now.

Monday, May 14, 2007

In my quest to consume less and reduce waste, I keep paper bags in my trunk for groceries.

These bags are sturdy. They biodegrade quicker than plastic.

They do not, however, hold vomit effectively.

Time to restock the car with something practical.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Anyone want to convince me to sign up forTwitter? I just don't know that I need to know any more than I currently know about what perfect strangers, or even my friends, are doing right now.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Do you love Sarah Susanka? If you do, then I love you. My cousin, who has a very varied life and currently lives in New Hampshire for the hell of it, turned me onto her. Creative gift-giver that I am, I bought "The Not-So-Big House" to give to my brother and sister-in-law in ATL as they were planning an addition. But they already had it! So now we own it and we pour over it as though it were porn. Or Braves stats. Whatever.

Now, Sarah Susanka has delved into lifestyle. I haven't had time to do research or even glance at the book due to other stuff going on. But I can't wait! I'm sure it will give me plenty of ideas about weeding: taking out friends, family issues, and inherited knick-knacks from my life to let my perfect garden grow.

Because I am too busy and my life is so-big, I only just now forgot to tell my sweet Canadienne about Susanka's appearance this week at our favorite local bookstore. Sorry! I need to read the book and then I'll never forget shit like that again!

Friday, May 04, 2007

Have ya missed me?

I've been having a lot of fun.

I'm so transparent -- my friends can tell this week has been magical for me. Those that don't know me have worried. "Are you stressed? Are you ok?" My closest peeps smile and nod knowingly at my hyped-up energy level, intense rambling, and buzzed demeanor.

The "tired old church play" I referred to earlier on this site finally took off, and I enjoyed the hard work, the creativity, the artistic people, and not least of all working with my daughter.

The job fell into my lap, literally. That has happened to me countless times (I actually interviewed for only one job I've ever held - the others were handed to me). And many of those jobs didn't work out so well. This job has not been easy on my family (though: the cash, we love it). But there is no denying that this Spring has been a valuable one for me in many ways.

In the meantime I've neglected the artists and musicians who usually keep me afloat. But it has been nice, for a while, to be one myself.