Showing posts with label scattershot. Show all posts
Showing posts with label scattershot. Show all posts

octobre. octobre. octobre.

Can I say how frustrating it is, to not be able to share what I'm doing right now? And that I know how annoying the secrecy is? It's one part paranoia over protecting my interests and two parts resolve to have something impressive to share for once. The paranoia I know is probably unnecessary, because it isn't as if there's a subset of Elliequent readers idling about just waiting to swoop in and steal my next dumb business idea. The resolve I hope is self-explanatory.

I decided to change my approach on a few things in a major way, which has made the whole enterprise a million times more exciting because now I have something truly worthwhile to sell, I think. But that about-face has cost me a lot of time and not a small bit of money, because the equipment I need is so specialized. In fact now I'm at another standstill, while I wait for yet another thing to arrive. Oh my god this vagueblogging is absurd. I'm sorry.

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I'm heading back to Lake Burton on Wednesday. My dear friend Bill hasn't been quite up to speed lately, so unfortunately it falls on me to go to one of the most beautiful places I've ever been, smack dab in the middle of leaf-peeping season (we timed my visit to the exact week the foliage is projected to be at its peak), and kick his octogenarian butt back into high gear. I mean I don't know where he gets off, slowing down as his 90s loom on the horizon, but not on my watch. No sir. I intend to have him baking bread in the morning, gardening in the afternoon, and cooking dinner every night. Oh and still drinking me under the table the whole time. DO YOU HEAR THAT, BILL? I'M COMING FOR YOU, BUDDY.

This older generation I tell you. Bunch of layabouts.

Anyway, as I am back on Instagram I apologize in advance for the onslaught. I haven't seen leaves change color since growing up in Michigan, and I am so goddamned excited.

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Have you heard "Bros" by Wolf Alice? Maybe it's my upcoming trip, the anticipation of which has me feeling like a little kid. Maybe it's the season. Or maybe it's the fact that these days I'm feeling especially connected to the people I care about, people who've been so kind about touching base with me to see how goes The Transition. I just feel really fucking lucky. And when I feel that way it doesn't take much to shove me over the sentimental edge, and I have to stop myself from texting everyone I know and saying I LOVE YOU. THANK YOU. Anyway, this song and video.



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Lately:

Moved my desk, for a change of scenery. I love seeing everyone in the building across. Feels like I have co-workers.

Had a stupidly fun night with Krista recently. The best kind of random night with no agenda, new people, and lots of laughs. No idea what's happening here but I had to document it for posterity. 

Jelly?
From the last night we hung out before she left. She'll be back to pack up (Ross is still here, too) before she's officially moved up to SF, so I'll see her again. But yeah. All the feels. 

I posted on IG about my randomly ending up at a Bernie Sanders rally the other day. This was my view from onstage. 

Car selfie yesterday. Terence's hand to my right. Fun afternoon. Oh, life. Y U so crazy.

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Tonight I'm having dinner with Ross and later Terence and I are going to Lane 8. He got tickets for us ages ago and we both love the music so much so we figured why not. I mean, come on:



Anyway, there will likely be some altered consciousness gramming later. Wheeeee!

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re: the post title - When I was in high school, my French teacher was obsessed with getting our pronunciation of Octobre perfect. She drilled us on it over and over and over until we had the second, closed 'o' sound and the '-bre' ending just right. Octobre. Octobre. Octobre. Ever since then I can't hear or think the word "October" without automatically practicing my Frawnch.

things coming, things passed

I am very happy to say that the sads I was having about a friend have been resolved. She reached out, but I wasn't ready. Then I reached out, and she was. We had dinner and talked about what happened and what we can do to keep it from happening again. I told her I just loved spending time with her, and was disappointed when she was flaky. That it's a bummer when things seem so often on her terms. She owned this and acknowledged she could probably work on that. Then I apologized for having ambushed her, slightly tipsily, with my hurt feelings in the first place. We cracked jokes, were honest and vulnerable, and it was all over and behind us in a matter of minutes. And then I got to sneak off to Minichella feeling all warm and fuzzy about someone I care for deeply. The best part, though? Her move has been postponed, indefinitely. I've got my Kerrbear for a while yet.

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My Bonnaroadtrip is all set! After the festival I'm renting a car and spending a week in Lake Burton, Georgia, with Mason's uncle and aunt, before visiting a friend of my parent's in South Carolina that I haven't seen since I was nine years old.

Why am I spending a week with my best friend's aunt and uncle? Well, because I've had the great pleasure of cultivating a friendship with them - mainly the avuncular half - for the past two+ years. I met Bill on Thanksgiving, 2012 and spent the holiday with him (and Terence, and Mason, and some of Mason's family) again the following year. Bill and I exchange emails here and there, which are mostly me being the lucky, grateful benefactor of his accumulated wit and wisdom. I even printed up one of my favorite messages from him; I keep a copy of it taped inside my desk drawer to peek at when I'm feeling lost:

Life is meaningless. We waste so much time looking for a meaning to life when our primary purpose should be to enjoy living. On the entire planet, among all the animals, only man is arrogant enough to believe that he was put here for a purpose, different from all other animals. 

I could get all weepy right now, trying to convey what Bill's support has meant - support which came to me out of nowhere, really, and for no good reason. When he found out I'd be down south, he invited me to come spend some time with he and his wife before flying back to LA. I've never been to Georgia or South Carolina, haven't been on a lake in decades, and it's been a lifetime since I took myself on a road trip. Really, really excited for this.

To sweeten the deal, I'm going to get together with an old associate of my father's - someone I haven't seen since I was a little girl. Dale got in touch with me after my dad died, sending me one of the kindest letters I've ever received. I don't think he'd mind my sharing a bit of it:

...The thing I can tell you that is regardless of any possible faults your mother and dad had, and we all have them, they loved you dearly. So take that and lift your head high, because not many have the depth of love they felt for you. That I can swear to.  
I hope you don’t mind my reading your blogs. It gives me a feeling of contact with your dad. Know all the manly crap and not supposed to shed tears, but he and I were pretty close and I was a listening post for some of his thoughts so it hit me very hard to find out he had passed away....

So that's who I get to connect with, in just a couple months. My dad wasn't in touch with any family and really didn't have friends around when he died. There were very few people I could talk to about him, who'd known him. In the past few years there's been no one at all. Needless to say I'm very, very much looking forward to this reunion, demolish my heart though it might.

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Speaking of, tomorrow marks three years to the day that my dad died. He would get such a kick out of the trip I've got planned. He was the original road-tripper, passed the love of it right down to me. Michigan to Florida. Florida to California. Arizona to Utah, Colorado, Texas. As a kid in the passenger's seat of my dad's cars I saw more of the U.S. than I've seen since, in adulthood. Every national park we could squeeze in, every scenic view and pull off. Always taking the long way there.

of Craisins and cat scarves

One of my roommates celebrated his seventh birthday a few days ago. He got a new Nylabone and a special trip to Vista Hermosa Park, where he copycatted my other roommate down the slide and sniffed stuff. Because you're never too old to sniff stuff.






Chaucer has only gotten sweeter and more entertaining with age. While he has grown a bit stubborn in his advanced years (I now have to keep dried cranberries handy on walks, for when he refuses to go where he should), it's usually less frustrating then funny, because he's just endlessly curious. He always wants to investigate new paths, go through strange doorways, and explore unfamiliar corridors. At home he is our constant companion. He trails us from room to room, forever ready with a toy to play, and always down for a cuddle puddle. The second my mood turns south he's at my side, nosing me for reassurance that everything's okay. There is nothing as familiar and comforting as his velvety face resting in my hands, and I love him so much I can barely stand it. He truly is one of the best things to ever happen to me, and I'm grateful for every last drop of drool.








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We spent the 4th of July with Kerry and Ross, barbecuing and watching fireworks from the roof. There may or may not have been an 80s dance party in the living room immediately following. And there may or may not have been a dollar flag from Wallgreens turned into an armband/headband/cat scarf. Here are way too many photos of said event:














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Saw my friend Z a few weeks ago. As is typical with Z, the better I look, the more likely he is to blink in a photo of us.


Amazing. Love him anyway. More fun from that weekend:




Upon the recommendation of some friends, I dragged Terence to Avalon for Roger Sanchez. Fun stuff.



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Aaaand, last but not least, my four favorite recent WordSwags (we make and send each other way too many of these, it's sort of ridiculous):






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Happy Friday everyone!

romantic justice

Man, cohabitation is doing a number on my social media presence, no two ways about it. I guess I just feel like a heel goofing around on Instagram when, say, the floor could stand to be mopped, or some other Shared Responsibility needs attending to. I want to be as good of a roommate as (I hope I've been!) a girlfriend. But I miss my IG buds, so I am in hot pursuit of that ever elusive thing of which I've heard tell: balance. Or if everyone could just co-sign a permission slip getting me out of housework for a couple days, I think I could catch up.

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A thing happened this past weekend which has happened before, and which I never know quite how to handle. It's sort of crazy to me, but with a few notable exceptions over the last several years, I have an otherwise unbroken streak of Semi-Significant or Significant Former Romantic Partners reaching out, months or even years after the fact, to say, essentially, Oops. These oopses have taken various forms and vehemence, but usually boil down to Oops, I screwed up. Rarely is it Oops, I screwed up and I'd like another chance. More, Oops, I screwed up and was kind of a dick to you, and I'm sorry. Just wanted to say that. Take care.

If you've never been on the receiving end of an Oops, you probably think you'd love it. You probably think it would be the most validating or maybe even ego-stroking thing ever. Well it's not. Not for me, anyway. It's actually just sort of uncomfortable and sad-making. Like, Oh. Well. Hrm. Thank you, I guess? And it's okay? No worries? Because what do you say to that? In most cases, it really is okay, because I'm not the type to hold grudges, and I've been both the rejector and the rejectee, and I get it. Shit (life) happens. And it's sad-making because honestly, even if dude-in-question really did hurt me (and oh boy did some of them ever hurt me), it makes me feel bad to think that they've been spending all this time leading up to the oops feeling guilty or ashamed or otherwise negative. If I'd known that, I would have probably sent them a quick text or email or something to say, Yo, it's all good. Stop thinking about me and use that brain juice for something better.

It's uncomfortable because I don't like the idea that I'm holding onto some kind of key for anyone, that will unlock some door, letting them pass through to a place where they're maybe a little bit happier. What if I got hit by a bus before they tried the key? And who the hell am I that my forgiveness or acceptance matters? I'm just as fucked up as the next person. I'm no arbiter of romantic justice. Lord knows I've done my share of wounding. 

Ultimately it ends up being a good thing, even if throws me for a loop initially. It's nice to know that, if I were to run into a SSFRP or a SFRP on the street, we could say hello and not have to pretend not to have seen one another, or worse - duck into a shopfront to hide (yep, done that). It's nice to feel peacefulness in your heart, when you think of someone who once made your heart beat faster. It weighs a lot less than some other feelings. 

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Terence and I spent part of Saturday scouring Pasadena for a pair of men's shorts that he hates so little as to be able to stand wearing them at Coachella this coming weekend, where it will be in the nineties and where, I have assured him, self-consciousness will be the very last thing he will be feeling. 

We were unsuccessful. He hates shorts like Craigslisters hate showing up at the agreed-upon time. 

But this was fun: while browsing at J. Crew he stopped at a table full of desk accessories and knick-knacks that caught his eye. "All this stuff is very Rainy Day," he said, causing me to nearly break my neck as a whipped my head around in surprise. 

"What did you say?" I demanded.

"All this stuff. Like, the fonts and colors or whatever. It reminds me of your design stuff."

So this would be the time to explain that Terence has only seen a few pages of my old template shop - and just once at that. I gave him a quick and dirty thirty second tour of the site and opened maybe a couple of the best designs. Yet apparently he paid close enough attention to be able to recall them well enough to make the comparison. Because he was right. It was a very Rainy Day-esque table of stuff. 

So that happened, and it was nice.

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My friends who threw the pastel party last Easter are throwing another party this year, but this one is Hawaiian themed. They sent us a pair of beautiful Tiffany stemless wine glasses as a housewarming gift, so we've decided to do something fun for them and perform Pineapple Princess at the party as a surprise. 

It took Terence all of fifteen minutes to learn the music, it was ridiculous. As soon as he had the chords down, we practiced a few times before he suggested recording it, just so we'd have it for ourselves. And holy crap you guys. I mean, I can't sing for shit, and I'm horrifically off-key for most of it - but you can hear the big dumb smile on my face, because the whole time I was singing, this stupidly cute boy whom I've conned into loving me was just grinning away at me while he played. Listening to it afterward wasn't nearly as cringe-inducing as I thought it would be, and I realized that singing an Annette Funicello song accompanied by my boyfriend on ukelele would pretty much win the Twee Blogger Olympics, if I had the guts to post it. Not my sport, though. 

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Chaucer is doing fine on his antibiotics; it seems like a very mild case of kennel cough (not that I have any idea, really; just basing that off how little he actually coughs). I'm trying to steer clear of other dogs as much as possible, but there are tons of them in my building. I'd take the stairs, but I don't want to stress him or his cough. It'd be more steps than he's up to, several times a day. He balks at more than two flights lately.

He's got an in-house sitter for Coachella, so I'm relieved about that. I hate leaving him period, much less when he's sick, but I was like, "Chauc, it's Muse. You understand, right buddy?" and he put his paw on my hand, nodded and said, "It's okay, Mom. I'd go too if they'd let me."

He basically hates his new roommate, by the way. In fact it's really sad to witness such a painful rejection.


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In other festivEllie news: I'm skipping Bonnaroo this year. Thanks to the ridiculous amount of festing I've done the past few years, most of the headliners and 2nd/3rd tier performers I'll have seen after this year's Coachella, so it would be a lot of repeats. It would definitely be cool to see Elton John (who'll be doing his first festival performance ever), but other than that, there aren't any really big (read: new) draws for me. And apparently I'll be able to get my Silent Disco fix at Coachella this year, anyway! Though god knows when I'll squeeze that in. 

But if either of the two major rumors about Outside Lands are true (Bruce Springsteen, The Pixies), I would LOVE to go back to that. And obviously if Explosions In The Sky returns, I will sell plasma to make it happen. Lineup comes out Tuesday, so fingers crossed!

I'm also eyeing Bottle Rock in Napa, which is over my birthday weekend. The Cure, Weezer, Howie Day, and Camper Van Beethoven are enough to get me drooling, and there's plenty else tempting in the lineup, too. But before I'd even heard of Bottle Rock we'd made other plans for that weekend, so we'll probably just stick with those. But damn. Weezer. On my birthday

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Okay well a quick re-read tells me that this is one of the lamest, one-note (boyfriendboyfriendboyfriend) scattershot posts I've written, so I'll go ahead and wrap it up for now. Oy.

small steps

A while back, inspired by the ever amazing Allie Brosh, I made this to cheer up a sick friend (I left off the accompanying in-jokey captions):

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Currently looping, in between Christmas music:

Annette Funicello - Pineapple Princess 
The Lemonheads - My Drug Buddy
DWNTWN - Stood Me Up
Air Review - Animal
Release The Sunbird - I Will Walk
The Spring Standards - Only Skin
Young Galaxy - Hard To Tell
Princeton - Andre
Wildlife Control - Brooklyn
A.C. Newman - I'm Not Talking
Races - All For You

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I rearranged my furniture, which is always very exciting. There are only so many ways stuff can go in 630 square feet, so it's fun to happen upon a layout that actually works or even improves upon the former one. This one's better since it gets my speakers away from that back shared wall. Chaucer seems to like it more, too. He's hanging out on his bed more, and asking to get up on mine less. Maybe he was chilly under the window, or just prefers to be on guard next to the door.





Finally hung some new stuff I'd had framed for my gallery wall:



An actual living room! (Sort of.)



Not sure if you can tell, but I hung over-door coat racks on the insides of my closet doors, and use those to hook the belt loops of all my jeans and pants over. Works awesome.

Hooks everywhere. Hooks for days. Hooks make it possible.


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January is shaping up to be Month of Education. I'm taking a bunch of classes to both build on skills I already have and bring myself up to speed on basic workplace software that I have pretty much zero familiarity with. Back to school for Ellie.

Small steps every day, right?

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We took Chaucer to the bar the other night. He excused himself to use the restroom, and when he got back, he had a little something stuck to his paw. So embarrassing.


We absolutely did not take video of it, either.

schmooping

I'm temporarily over Halloween. I love the scene, I love seeing the costumes of others, but I'm lousy at thinking of my own, much less actually putting them together. And I feel a little silly doing the sexy-whatever thing, unless it has some clever component. So I'm relieved to have a break this year - instead of going out on Thursday, we're going to see Empire of the Sun. I splurged and got us orchestra pit tickets, because the glimpses I caught of them from way in the back of the tent at Bonnaroo this year were just amazing. I want to be up close for the spectacle. There's a chance I'll give in and throw on a tutu, partly to make a C+ effort towards dressing up, but mostly to carve out some extra personal space (trick I learned at EDM festivals; works like a charm). But I'd be perfectly happy just sweating it out in a tank top and jeans. Really, really excited for this show.

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After much consideration, I've decided on code name LeBoyf, to designate his significant otherness from here on out. Jesus, Ellie, LeBoyf? Really? Yes, really. Because it is so completely dumb and amuses me greatly, and because it is the perfect OMGironic way to suggest that his Frawnchness is in any way a big deal, which it is not, because in truth the only time we even parlez francais is in crowded elevators, for the lolz (okay maybe a little bit in private too, because come on). It is nevertheless exciting to me to actually have someone special in my life, who is perfectly okay with being written about*, and he deserves a better blog call sign** than just a fake name. And that would be pointless anyway, since we decided fuck it, where being public on social media is concerned.

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There's not much that gives me warmer fuzzies than when my friends meet my SO and they hit it off. He's met a handful of my friends over the past few weeks. And oh man, when they make a point to take me aside and tell me how much they like him, specifically because of how they see him treating me, I just feel cellular-level happiness, I swear. It's one thing when I rave about him, but when the people who mean the most to me give him the stamp of approval - that just feels like a giant puzzle piece snapping into place, yanno? And as to how it's been for him - he said it was like meeting my family.

:)

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We went to IKEA, aka Where Relationships Go To Die, yesterday (I still limping and on one hour's sleep - and yes, I'd like extra points for both of those). And about the most tense things got was when I lectured him on the evils of overly matching furniture (because I am an expert, doncha know). And it wasn't so much tension, even, as me being indignant and know-it-all and him just sort of cocking his head at me in confusion, the way Chaucer does when I say a word he doesn't understand. What you mean, identical upholstery is tacky? I no understand, human.

Anyway, I'm happy to report that neither our relationship, nor any of the small children I'm convinced were placed in the aisles as spike strips for the injured chick, died.


I found the cheese at the end of the rat maze, and he found the source of the spike strip-kids' fructose-fueled hyperactivity. 
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I think I finally figured the Twitter thing out - how to enjoy it, both as a reader and as a writer-of-tweets. Yeah. That shit is pretty fun, after all. After spending a couple months reading some hilarious, absurdist, and seriously clever stuff, I'm trying my hand at joining in the fun. So forgive me if I overdo it. I just get stupidly excited when someone (I deem) cool likes something I write (e.g., a contributing writer for SNL faved a few of my tweets and I immediately texted my BF to brag, because I am a sad, sad human), and thus take it as encouragement for my goofy sense of humor.

UPDATE: Holy crap. @midnight (account for the new Chris Hardwick show) started following me tonight, based on my contribution to their trending hashtag, I guess? BASICALLY I AM NOW WINNING AT LIFE is what I'm saying, so just, you know, remember who you're talking to. #patheticmomentsofsocialmediaglory

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Haha, total fail on doing much of anything other than schmooping. I'm sorry. But hey, want some hot music tips? Here's some stuff I've been into latey:

Chad Valley (Shell Suite, Shapeless)
Sarah Jaffe (Clementine, Vulnerable)
Ki Theory (Bat Penatar) (hat tip: LeBoyf)

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* I'll never forget his face when he was describing having read one of the first posts (can't remember which/where/what) I'd written about him. He said he had to stop every few lines, because it was so intense to read such complimentary things about himself. He said it was like I'd written the ultimate love letter and then shared it with the world. (!)

I've since enacted a strict-ish no-read-the-blog rule, for various reasons. He knows if there's something I want to share with him, I'll do so, and otherwise trusts me and wants me to feel free to carry on bloglife as usual. Which I am trying.

** Hat tip: Sarah

jones break

Last night I was looking for information online about my foot fracture, because that is what you do when you're uninsured: you consult Dr. Google. (His bedside manner sucks but at least he accepts walk-ins.) Dr. G taught me that my particular fracture - the 5th metatarsal - is called a "Jones break." Cut to me searching under those terms and bringing up a page full of results...about the recent separation of Catherine Zeta and Michael Douglas. LOL.

Rather than ignore this useless information and refine my search to include the word "foot", I spent the next ten minutes laying in bed, bemusedly fleshing out a scenario in my head where the opposing bits of my broken bone are a fiery but beautiful Zeta Jones-type and an equally passionate (but noticeably more wizened) Douglas-type. But, like, bones instead of people.

A heated argument, neither even remembers how it started. Michael's been hitting the Macallan pretty hard tonight. He's still not over the time she accidentally cried out "Oh, Antonio!" in bed. Words are exchanged. Catherine calls him an anws blewog, and after thirteen years of marriage, you know he's learned that particular bit of Welsh. When Michael tauntingly asks her when the last time she fit in her Entrapment catsuit was, she loses it. She grabs her Louis Vuitton duffel, stuffs a few essentials into it, grabs the keys to the Bentley, and heads out the door...

....and Ellie's foot goes snap.

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Got my ticket for The Vaccines show, which is just a couple of weeks away. Hoping against hope I'll be able to walk to it (I still have bruising on the bottom of my foot, so I'm scared to put weight on it yet even though it's been six weeks).

If you haven't heard of them, or if you didn't check them out the last time I banged on about them, seriously do so. Much awesomeness.

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I got cold hit on yesterday. By a stupidly good-looking guy. Story time!

Late afternoon, I'm a hot mess. No makeup, unbrushed hair, baggy jeans, t-shirt. I'm taking Chaucer out for a quick potty. As we wheel out of the elevator, peripherally I notice a guy sitting in the lobby. I hear him say something, How ya doing? or something, to which I mumble a reply without looking up, because a) I think he's someone else, specifically a guy from my building and b) I know I look like hell/ridiculous on the scooter.

I let Chauc pee around the corner, and we return to my building.

As we're coming in the door, a very tall and handsome guy and a short blonde woman in glasses are exiting. The way the guy says hello and smiles at me makes me think I must know him from somewhere, and I wrack my brain trying to figure out who he is. Then I realize he was the guy sitting over by the elevators five minutes before, though I still don't understand the grin.

He and the blonde start chatting me up about Chaucer, with her asking most of the questions (Oh, is this your dog? Do you live in the building? He's a mastiff, right? "Chaucer"? Are you from England?), while the guy just sort of stands there watching me. I cannot for the life of me figure out why they're being so solicitous and chatty. Then she tells me she's a dog walker, and I prepare to be handed a business card. But she just introduces herself and her friend, and both of them shake my hand. He then chimes in to say that's why he was sitting by the elevator - he was waiting for her to be finished walking a dog from my building. The way this information is relayed by them - along with the very intent way the guy is looking at me (which, seriously, was starting to make me blush) - makes me realize they're purposefully clarifying their relationship because the guy, for some reason, digs the cut of my jib.

I have no idea what to do or say. I'm obviously done walking my dog, introductions have been made, what am I supposed to do? I maintain eye contact with the guy as directly as I can without it being ridiculous (because I really am blushing at this point), tell them it was nice to meet them, and wheel off towards the elevators. The last lingering look from the guy as they head out the door seals the deal. Yep, totally digging me. I wonder as Chaucer and I head back upstairs if he'll maybe come back by, leave his number at the rental office or something? The thought occurs to me that for the first time in my life there may be a Missed Connections listing on Craigslist in my immediate future. It feels like that kind of encounter.

I unclip Chauc, wipe off his feet, and then roll back out to grab a Starbucks across the street. My regular barista is there and we're yammering away as he's making my drink, so at first I don't notice: the guy and girl I just met are sitting at a table right outside the window.

A second later, they both turn their heads to look in at me. I realize they must have seen me leave my building, cross the street, and come in to order. I make the appropriate Oh! Hey again! face, and we wave at one another. Nervous, I pull out my phone and pretend to be engrossed in Instagram while I wait for my macchiato. I glance back out the window and see the guy slowly stand and sort of stretch while saying something to the girl (who remains seated). He looks at the cup in his hand for a second, then lifts his head to look at me. I have no idea what expression to compose my features into, but I realize I'd better pick one quickly, because now he's coming inside.

He's sweet and very direct about it. The pretense is to get some ice water from the barista, but right smack in front of another customer (and the barista), he looks me square in the eye and says something about not wishing to be weird, but could he give me his phone number?

I'm smiling all over the place despite feeling extremely awkward and ugly and self-conscious (seriously, not a drop of makeup - and I was wearing an absolutely beat-to-hell v-neck that shows my awful sun damaged decolletage), because his manner is really soft-spoken and lovely, and I appreciate the fact that he offered me his number, rather than asking for mine (and thus affording me the choice of whether or not to follow through). A minute later I've got his business card in my hand and he's got my word that I'll use it.

I have, as is my specialty, turned a very not-big-deal ten minute situation into a massive blog post, like a diary writing tween, so I will wrap it up with this: dark floppy hair, massive brown doe eyes, absurdly cute, actor/singer/media manager, huge internet presence that I resisted looking into beyond a quick survey (okay maybe I watched ten seconds of a video of him singing and playing guitar), lives six blocks from me, and is probably, oh hell I don't know, late twenties? But I mean, he saw me in the harsh light of day, and kids, yr blogmistress fully looks her age in the harsh light of day. Fully. So who knows. Maybe he likes the oldur wimminz.

I haven't texted him yet.

two away zone

I'm having a rough night tonight. I'm so, so sick of being housebound with two bad feet. Yes, two. A couple of weeks ago, I managed to jack up my right foot, I think from all the hopping around on it? I thought it would feel better in a day or two, but instead it got progressively worse. And then I spent all of last weekend running around town on it, going out to dinner, to bars, to the pool, and by Sunday night, it was murder to even stand on it.

Anyway, I know it's just a matter of a few more weeks, so I'm trying not to be a whiner. But these little demons in my head keep whispering things that make me scared, all these what-ifs about improper healing, about permanent damage or chronic pain, about the possibility of not being able to run again.

And I'm at that point where I know I have to ignore these demons and just have faith that everything's going to be fine.

Faith, I have come to realize, is nothing more than the decision to anticipate a positive outcome. And I like thinking of it this way, because it gives me a sense of control where otherwise I felt none. At the very least, I can choose to anticipate good things vs. bad. That choice is mine to make. It's a small thing, but it's something to hold on to.

The one thing that invariably overcomes negative feelings, for me, is taking action of some kind. Action beats the shit out of worry. But there are occasionally times when there really is no action I can take. This is one of those times. Inaction is, in fact, my only and best option.

And it sucks.

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New to me, music-wise:

The Eastern Sea (The Match, America)
James Vincent McMorrow (Sparrow and the Wolf, Hear The Noise That Moves So Soft and Low)
The One AM Radio (In a City Without Seasons, Sunlight)
The Neighborhood (How)
Radical Face (Always Gold)
Whitley (More Than Life)
Beta Radio (Where Losers Do)
Turtle Giant (Dry Eye, Something That You Need, We Were Kids)
The Helio Sequence (Back To This, Downward Spiral, Shed Your Love, Lately, October, Hallelujah)

There's also a new Washed Out album! Haven't listened to it yet though.

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Last night I woke up in the middle of the night, with the following sentence stuck in my brain: No one ever had their heart impounded for parking it in the wrong place. 

I've never had that happen. The words were just stuck there, and wouldn't budge. I almost felt breathless when I woke up, it seemed like such an urgent thought. I grabbed my phone and typed it into a note, but beyond that, I don't know what to make of it. I don't even know if it's true. I think I've had my heart impounded a few times, and it was hell getting it back.

Anyway, for fun, I half-baked this up in the Paper FiftyThree app:

4.24.13

The other day I watched a TED talk which I enjoyed so much that I want to recommend it. Dan Barber, a chef from New York, traveled to Spain where he met an eccentric fois gras maker with a unique approach to raising and keeping geese. I'm not a foodie and I've never even had fois gras, but I loved his story so much. If you've got 20 minutes, I promise you won't reget giving them to him.

After I'd watched it, I texted a friend to recommend it. He asked if I'd ever seen Sarah Silverman's TED talk, which apparently was pretty controversial. So I checked that one out, too, out of curiosity. If you haven't seen it and don't care to, the controversy boils down to the things she said about wanting to adopt "a mentally retarded baby with a terminal illness."

I think she made an interesting point in her interview with Bill Maher afterward, which was that the PC or un PC nature of the word "retarded" doesn't concern her, because the people that get upset by it aren't the mentally handicapped people themselves - they're their advocates. And she doesn't give a fuck about their advocates.

Anyway, what to me was more interesting than that part of her talk (which was more or less disjointed and unrelated bits of stand up), was her weirdly vicious attack on adult film actresses, in song form. It was just so strange and, like, cruel. And grossly misogynist, completely ignoring male porn stars. I just found it mean spirited and shaming and unfunny and sad-making. Sex workers are human beings too, for fuck's sake.

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I unfollowed someone on Instagram yesterday, because he started adding Bible verses and religious quotations to every photo he posted (his pics are mostly various nature macros). I didn't say anything or flounce or whatever, I just quietly clicked the green button and showed myself out of the room. Well, this morning he commented on one of my pics, saying he knew why I'd unfollowed, but he still liked me anyway.

And we had a friendly exchange where I explained to him that while I understood that the verses were important to him to share, they made me feel like I was having to sit through commercials for something I have no interest in buying, when all I want to do is watch the show. His perspective was that he believes in heaven and hell, and he loves everyone, including me, and doesn't want me to go to hell, so he feels obligated to do what he can to prevent that.

So that was how that broke down.

It's the second time I've done that on Instagram. The first time, I think the woman must have lost a lot of followers, because she stopped doing it, and made a sort of outreach back to followers she'd lost, being very like-y and chatty with them. So I added her back, because I truly do enjoy her photos.

I enjoyed this other person's, too (as well as interacting with him), but when the verses and quotes are coming at me every single day, all day long, it feels a little heavy-handed and aggressive, and it's just alienating.

I suppose I could play the devil's advocate with myself here, though, and say that there are plenty of people who post lengthy comments, or poems, or song lyrics with their photos, and I just ignore that stuff when I'm not interested in it. So why can't I ignore the preachy stuff?

Well, I guess partly because I respect the creative endeavor of adding a bit of short flash fiction or original poetry or something like that. And the occasional quote (that someone else has written) doesn't bother me, and can in fact be cool. But I feel like those people who make an effort to match up quotes with their pics are at least diversifying a little bit, instead of just plunking down the same source (the Bible) again and again and again. I find the Biblical stuff alienating and boring, so I just change the channel.

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Walking Chaucer has been so lovely lately, at dusk. The weather is amazing, and the grass at Grand Park is so nice. And none of the security minds if I unclip him and we play fetch on the (relatively, we are in the city after all) huge expanse. He just runs and runs and his tongue hangs out and he smiles and it's my favorite part of the day.

Here's our daily view:






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And finally...out with the old, in with the new!



(Recaps still coming! They're just pretty epic and I've been waiting until I felt ready to tackle 'em...)

hinges, bridges, and baskets

I feel so ridiculous right now. I'm self-conscious and gun shy and all tied up in my head. I'm scared to blog. And I know the only way to break through it is to just write something, anything. But I hate filler and I hate just typing for the sake of hitting the keys.

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I need to make major changes in my media consumption. I feel like I've been drinking from some poisonous wells over the past several months - maybe longer. A few sips, and I undo all the hard work of trying to be positive and find inspiration in the daily. All of a sudden I'm frustrated and angry and annoyed, with no place to direct those negative feelings. Mental energy just burned up with nothing to show for it, and a bad taste in my mouth for the rest of the day. I'm disappointed in myself for not being more disciplined.

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I think I've gotten better at not letting my happiness hinge on things that can change. There's been a brutally steep learning curve for me on this - one that's spanned most of my adulthood, in fact. For most of that time, I clung to the people in my life, terrified of losing them. I suppose that's typical for a child of divorce?

Loss and change are an inevitable part of life. But instead of coming to understand and accept this over time in a healthy, measured way, I think I denied and denied it until all of a sudden, everyone who was supposed to be a constant in my life was gone, over a bewilderingly short period of time. It felt like my skin was ripped clean off my body, and I was alone, exposed to the elements, helpless. Of course, I wasn't ever helpless. I just hadn't accepted the fact that it's no one's responsibility but my own to look after myself. I had me to take care of me, and that's enough most of the time. And that won't change. If I can make me happy, that's a happiness I don't risk losing, whereas depending on another to fulfill me emotionally, or to take care of me - that's betting the farm and not having any idea what weather's coming down the line.

People will come and go from my life. Money will come and go - so will the things it buys. I'll have to move and give up homes I love; leave cities I've grown attached to. All the things that it's so easy to lean on as touchstones in my life can change with deceptive ease and speed. So I work really hard at placing these things in my heart in such a way that when they inevitably go away, they don't rip my heart out with them.

And in the meantime, I cultivate happiness in things that can't be taken away from me, so that when the bigger losses do hit, I've got things to turn to, to ease the pain. Music. Writing. Running. And I'm trying very hard to kick my reading life back into gear.

This isn't to say I don't treasure the people in my life, even though I know they'll someday be gone. I absolutely do, no question. I just try to think of my relationships with them like a bridge between us. They're the destination on the far side - a city that is exciting and fun to visit, and rewarding to experience. But you rarely walk across a bridge without stopping to take in the view. The work of building and maintaining relationships is like enjoying that walk back and forth, between the other and the self. When you learn to enjoy that process - that journey - it's a joy that can be renewed again and again, with each new relationship. It doesn't go away when that person does; when you can no longer visit that city.

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Some friends are throwing a Pastel Party for Easter. My awesome friend who designed the invitation sent me a version without names/addresses to post, because he is (as I may have mentioned) awesome:



And speaking of Easter, I made Chaucer a basket, the toys for which he could smell in the shopping bag before I even took them out. I have video that I'll post later, of him being utterly ridiculous and hilarious and whining about it, but for now, this pic alone shows how bad he was pouting, because I wouldn't give him anything from it:
















GOOBER.