Friday, November 30, 2007

Acoustic Heart

Link to set your mood:

"Cause a free wind is blowing through your hair..." - America

1,2,3,4....So, I have never been able to figure this out. I still to this day cannot express in words what the sound of acoustic guitar, or even more specifically, 70's classic rock can do to me. Maybe it's the crisp sound of metal guitar strings and bellowing voices that have reason and heartbreak in equal measure.

James Taylor can bring me to tears in the midst of an agro-workout where Nelly Furtado was previously helping boost my heart-rate and hair-bop on the elliptical. Don Mclean has nursed me out a thousand bad moods. Cat Stevens? The tone of sincerity in his voice wraps my spine in a web of love and compassion. "Father and Son" makes me want to be a man and love one at the same time. ( bizarre visual....sorry).

The Eagles, Hall and Oates, The Police, Fleetwood Mac, America...maybe its the memory of those bell-shaped white speakers with huge punch holes standing on large stripe painted poles at the pool? I was in an American compound in the Middle East... how did this music: 1. Get there? 2.Effect me so? Regardless of its roots in my soul fibers, it reminds me of youthful sex and freedom. Yet, I wasn't youthful for long, and my sexual prowess was in the early 90's (to horrible music.)

Right. Okay. So, this is where a perfectly wrapped up paragraph would be ideal. I, like my blog-thoughts, don't really follow a conventional pattern. It's amazing what comes to mind. I will free flow this: A cheap painting of dark brown stalks of pussy willows and wheat blowing in auburn-colored skies.Rail thin blond(es) with yellow bikinis lounging in "clockwork orange"-like beach chairs. Myself on a sandy warm beach with my hair blowing lightly across my face. Candle light. Hot lovey sex. The Wheaties box.The smell of sunscreen. The warm tingle of the sun beginning to burn my skin. My heart, like a palpitating energy of confined love melting through a cage and dripping its purified capacity of hurt and give into the universe.

Every time I hear such music I am taken somwhere. Again, I struggle to place where it started, but it has always been there. In the same words I used on my 8th grade page in junior high:

"If they were right, I'd agree. But it's them they know, not me." - Cat Stevens. Grace Church School yearbook (1991, Houston, TX)

Doot Doo, Doot Doot Doo...

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Magic 8-ball of my dreams

The perfect Magic 8-ball would have only these options on a 8-sided triangular thingy in dyed-blue water:

o "Are your pants too big? They look loose."
o "Of Course he thinks of you every day, who wouldnt?"
o "Just this once, can you stop thinking of yourself?"
o "You will land on your feet. Trust me."
o "You have that answer in your heart. Listen."
o "It's probably for the best."
o "Look at _______, You are WAY better."
o "Who cares about that, have you lost weight?"

(squinted eyes...SHAKE, SHAKE, SHAKE)

Redeem your you-rebate today!

Today is the kind of day that sneaks up on you. The sleeper bad day. You think its going to be nice, Its sunny out. That, I noticed when I peaked my eyes open this morning. Its cold, ok... Its Chicago, I can deal. You stay positive. You roll through the list of things that are a "must-do". you know...go to work, get that report in, drop the car off...whatever it is.

There are usually about 3 actions that must take place in order for the day to have its "desired purpose and completion". That I can handle as well. After all, we aren't here to just bounce around and frolic with glee and anticipation of the next fun thing....that would be silly. (I think)

My list today was:
-go to the doctor
-get quote in for the new project
-sign my daughter up for swim class

Fine. boring. Why don't we set better intentions? Like:

-Feel sexy all day
-Give 5 compliments to random folk
-Be grateful that I can walk, talk and breathe

Nope. Too hard. Crazy right? Wrong. I was doing some research on this ( not really) and found that most people can't deal with a scope that big. We need to drill it down to small, manageable actions, and then maybe, if we feel like we "earned" it, we then will create a sideways reward. ( go to the gym, eat some chocolate, get a babysitter)

We accept it with everything else. Coupons for loyalty, rebates for food, rewards for eating:"Buy three sandwiches, get the fourth one free". We accept vacation days off, if we worked hard. Though, the standard of "working hard" doesn't really factor in anything except hours for most of us. That must be why we seek the same pattern in our own behavior. I feel like revolting today. I feel like demanding something good from a day without having to first accomplish said intentions. What if my intention is to ENJOY THE DAY. Ha. That's lunacy.

I'm making my own life coupon:
[ Rebate for free: I'm worth it ! ]

offer expires when you decide to feel guilty again.



Tuesday, November 27, 2007

If I were a pie (Waitress)

Tonight I am sticking with the thematic interest of the late and so smart director: Adrienne Shelly. Purely in homage to her cinematic mini masterpiece nugget of sullen love. I pose these suggested pies to describe me or my life(at some point):
PS: I am almost certain her screenplay had more commas than any post I have ever thrown at the world.

0 Crumpled, burning cherry, dis-contented bitter sweet Godiva chocolate molten pie.

0 Missing center, double-dough flapped over itself sausage of sin with minced ginger pie.

0 No bake, frozen flowered bridal run with hope sprinkles pie.

0 Nutty fruit layer with semi-sweet chocolate on ovulation days only pie.

0 Tower of whipped words with egg and cheese and dicey spicy ham pie.

0 Happy honey and butter bean smarty pants with sugar crumble pie.

What's your pie?

Bonus for fun: "Tid-bits that rhyme":
I once made a little boy poo, that is all he could do. He dug in the sand, and covered it with his hand. The boy who had to poo, gave me a lifelong curse of IBS voodoo.

If you didnt see the movie, this must seem so strange. Come back to it...someday.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Family dysfunction killed the holiday roadshow

The gas prices should be enough to deter us from driving across three states. The feeling of my daughter's feet pounding the back of my seat with her snow boots should keep me from the tradition. The sound of my patience slipping out the backdoor of my soul as we line up in typical Chicago traffic for over two hours just to clear the city limits...that should be enough. None of those things kept us from enduring the annual five star, five stop family road show.....Instead, it was the five stops that stopped us.

It is no secret. "Normalcy" is dysfunction. My specificity of experience is growing up in a home of early divorce, and remarriage. Until this year, I thought I had seen all of its vile by-products: Trust issues, blurred family roles, stunted ability to commit, and so on. People love to throw the statistics at you like social grenades of justification for their relationship issues. Shite, I did! "Marriage to one person is inane, it has less than 50% chance of survival" or "Look at Kurt and Goldie! That's how to do it.".

Those of us who grew up in homes of early divorce look at each other with knowing eyes. When the holidays roll around we say things like: "Whose house is hosting?" or "Are you baring the elements of multi-family gatherings?" We nod in recognition, and hand over the glass of wine. The one thing (lack of thing) I noticed was that fewer people were making the trip. This year, more of us put the proverbial foot down and said: "We are staying home.".

Think about this. It is nearly impossible to please every one with all the factors, and multiple destinations. Let's use our example. My husband is adopted, and in touch with his birth family, and his parents divorced and remarried. Right there....we got 3 "moms" . Add my mother and step-mother and there are 2 more. His father lives out west, and my late father's wife lives out of state. IF you followed ANY of that, you are sorely in the same spot as us. Leaving several people upset with you this year for not making the trip. Even worse, when you do make the trip the inevitable complaint comes out: "I wish we saw you guys more." What?!

Let's further do the math. If we want to see 5 sets of people twice a year, that is 10 weekends. There are 12 months a year, so that makes it more than every other month we are either entertaining or traveling. Short, condensed, forced family togetherness. I'm not as jaded as I sound, just explaining the facts alone sounds exhausting, imagine living it? Wait. You it. Everyone does, unless you are part of the 1% of of us that live with Sally Fields-like matriarchs or have the "Dan-in-real-life" reality. Right. You are like us.

Well, my thoughts on this.....too bad. Times have changed, marriage has changed. If there was ONE central location ( like a grandma's house) that we could trek to and see everyone, we'd be more than willing to deal with the pain and suffering all at once. Maybe we could rent a huge ski lodge/cabin. Keep the different "groups" in different wings. They could avoid each other so as not to have any awkward moments. We could arrange the meetings like speed-dating. Or isn't that what family holidays are about?

Family dysfunction killed the holiday roadshow. You know what? I'm not complaining. Yes, Id love to have a knock-em-out holiday where family was a union of cheers and laughter. Yes, Id love to feel like everyone got to see their granddaughter, niece...children. Yes, Id love to fit into some ideal we all hold of family holidays, but truth be told: I'm a little excited that we finally have a good and debatable reason to skip the trip....

You got divorced.

( nervous smile) Tee hee.

I'm not worldly!

nIs music worldly? Sounds obvious..."yes". But I wonder...other than the obvious syllabus we learned in "World Music 101" as the elective that required little homework, I don't claim to know much. I think true Zulu-bush African = drums. I think of Mexican and Polish =polka sounding( I know thats a hack assesment). Ireland is sad and folksy, Arabic is melodic and whiny...I will stop before I upset the no one reading.

Modern day music though...I really question. Are there entire other musical cultures? (of course!) Am I THAT naive? Do Bulgarian teen girls listen to their own version of Britney or Ani Difranco? They must. Yet, every movie, even foreign films, have some American musical reference. A pan-out shot shows two hipster Austrians in a record store that has vintage 45's hanging on string from the ceiling. One of those albums is always something like Frank Zappa or The Cars. Clapton had to be a rock and roll classic all over the world right? The Rolling stones!?

Do Italians really only listen to Eros Ramazotti or is that just what American restaurant/store owners think sounds really authentic? I loved him when I was in Denmark. His naughty rolling tongue made me want to throw off my over sized sweatshirt and pull out my scrunchies in 92. The year after that I remember hearing Jamiriquoi and Ace of Base for the first time booming through the Copenhagen radio. Only a year later, both were being played at a school dance at my US boarding school. Looking back, I realize it was born somewhere else.

I guess I just can't picture that somewhere, some group of cool people are listening to entire varieties of music that isn't in any way American? ( how ecocentric). Michael Jackson was big in Saudi. Seriously, do Japanese kids have their own Pearl Jam and The Killers? Is there a whole set of Chinese listening to their own version of Celine Dion of Taipei? Do the Canadians think Celine is a sell out? Why I am still talking about Celine?

So...I ask again..Is music worldly? Or is the question am I? Either in my age, or my life status has forced me to listen to what I am played. In the absolute interest of not letting go of my coolness...I better go get me some Finnish hard rock and Melbourne style feminist folk, or some of that crazy Persian pop.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Beware: Fullers!

Have you ever been talking to someone and they say the strangest thing in response to you? They might say: "Good..uh huh." in retort to you re saying: "I had a wretched day today, I think I have to put the dog down." This usually happens with two types of people in your specific life. Those with which you have no "filter". (ie. spouse, best friend, mother) or a total disinterest in(ie. your mother-in-law, co-worker who blabs too much, the PTA mom you loathe...etc).

This happens way more than you would imagine. Shocking evidence that people are NOT listening to what we have to say, even worse, when we actually need them to. Instead, they are using fillers to drop into the spaces they don't have the paitence or concentration to actually produce a response. Factor in the Internet, IM's, blackberries, driving...people don't give you the 100% of the floor like they used to.

I propse we go with the AA philosophy and create a trinket or baton or pickle, and when engaging in conversation, only ONE person can hold the pickle at a time. Everyone must listen to the person holding the pickle. I am going to name it: "fullers". A hybrid of two words. You do the linguistics.

There are your average, everyday fullers. I was talking to my husband the other day, I said: "Everyone here at work is so deflated. I didn't realize how many people are losing their jobs." He says: (and I quote) "Cool."

Then there are pre-fab fullers. Yep, that was just average. I was talking to a neighbor last week and she was busy tending to her flock of children, or was it baking? Something involving pasteurized milk and curd balls.

I said: "So, I got home early and took a bath. It was nice." she says: "yeah, that sucks." Now, this is bad because the non-listener, or the "fuller face" is so obliviously not paying attention the words coming out of my mouth. I would venture to guess she does this to people so often she has upgraded them to seem a little more interactive.

Other examples of such pre-fab fullers: "eh-hm", "Wow, really?" , "No way!", "Well, what are you going to do?", "it happens." "how ironic." and so forth. These responses are so over-utilized in common conversation a person throwing fullers doesn't even have to listen, they can just hear the tone in your voice, and like muscle memory remembers a yoga pose or a running pattern , the brain spits something out. Next time you feel it's happened to you, instead of feeling a little sullen and ignored, say to them: "really? you think so? why?" and wait for the long pause.

I get it, we all do this. There is no possible way we can listen to everyone that talks to us with all of our attention. Life is too fast and valuable to take the time to truly interface with other humans. We have blogs to read, radio to listen to, work to do, global warming to fight. People, in the end, are the only thing that remember who and what we were. Listening to them would be, well....wasteful of our time, right?

And you say..... "eh-hm." Good talk.

Happy Thanksgetting Crazy

Ahhhhh, the smell of red apple cider, and smokey fires leads the heart to a place of family and food, football and friends. You picture yourself at a large table, every one's faces with cheerful glow and attentive gratefulness for all you are doing. ( record scratch)

Or, maybe it looks a little like this. Your holding the corn souffle with two hands (one without a oven mit) while kicking the oven door shut so the toddler doesn't stick her grimy little lollipop hands in it and get burned. Meanwhile, the husband and friends are watching football in your living room with their feet up, periodically chirping in: "wow, that smells great....Im gonna get fat today". This is only the before meal moments, the during and apres are the most stressful, making sure everyone is served ( while you chug some wine in between filling glasses) and the god-awful countless chore of dish washing. These are the kinds of dishes you cant rinse and flop into the washer, they are serving platters, goblets, butter boats, and hand painted cutesy gifts you have to use so people don't get offended.

I say all of this, not with ill-gratitude, quite the opposite. It is the strangest self-induced chaos anyone could commit to, yet we do, and look forward to it. At least I do. There is something predictably delightful about it, in the same strange way cranberry sauce from a can is curiously the completion of a good-cooked meal. It is both a poetic dance in the kitchen and purposeful prose in the result of sated happy family members.

I am Thanksgetting crazy, and grateful.

Monday, November 19, 2007

What's YOUR theme song?

So...per usual, I was thinking, and I turned to my husband during the AMA awards and asked: "What's YOUR theme song?" He didn't quite understand, as normal, logical systemic people think. I had to further explain: "If your entire existence had to be summed up in a song, not one that reminds you of something, but one that describes you." He triple nodded and begun compartmentalizing times of his life, chronological events that have lead him to where he is now. His mind was racing and chugging through the thoughts like an industry-sized machine with metal-arms and magnets and 4-claw memory hands that sorted through song lyrics and titles.

"Mine, at the risk of being totally chick-freak cliche and too much like Sophia Coppola's incredible brain-child Lost in Translation where Scarlett Johnnason spins sexy in a whole new way, "Brass in Pocket" - The Pretenders." ( I claimed this song, as life-theme song years before the movie, but I wont get technical)

He agreed, sat on this thoughts for a few more minutes and then without hesitation of any type. Note even a smidge of inflection in his voice that would lead me to believe this proclamation was anything less than 100% diligently selected:

"Mine is "Highway to the Danger Zone - Kenny Loggins". I laughed hysterically and then kissed him on his forehead.

"Absolutely, sweetheart. Abso-fecking-lutely."

On Being grateful

Today was one of those day that make you rethink all the things you have as priority. Deadlines at work stomp you into a folded origami. Guilt about not being at home creeps up, the long list of things that you forgot to do this weekend: grilled cheese, wipes, toothpaste are bouncing off you like an atari game-ball and you are the sliding ledge bouncing off the walls of life. I think: "What am I doing? What for? Really?"

It took nothing more than a friendly email from a neighbor that said things with exclamation points and words like "outstanding" and funny jokes. I was starting to type my own words, and they weren't as cheery. Instead, they were actually more strained and forced. It made me stop and think: "Is it really that bad?" and it wasn't, so I restructured the sentences, and the words formed and became a little sunnier, and beamed a little bit brighter. I even thanked her for the mood boost. Its a choice. I could have sent a drab email back, and sat in my boo-hoo stink, or as I did...decide to be in a good place, and stay honest with my day, my disappointments, even had a few self-jabs for the sake of token laughs. It worked. It feels good to volley.

So, today ended much differently than it started. I was motivated to send a mass email with CML featured as the newly two-year old star. I got more and more proud by the responses, and things fell into a nice and comfortable place. Again, one spin on my mood set the day in orbit, and everyone benefits. Chloe got a perky mommie who took her to the park after work, husband got some free time at home this evening, and I feel better for not succumbing to the very easy path of self-pity.

Don't get me wrong, Self-pity is completely fair game in my world, sometimes even encouraged, but there is a fine line between sinking into something useless, and non-productive, and taking the due validation for a time of struggle in whatever gradient.All in all. its easier than it seems. Maybe today was a fluke. I managed to float above the horrendous stress of work, the let down of not getting pregnant, and the hormonal flush of PMS. So...let's see if I can choose it again tomorrow.

here's hoping.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The missing (piece) blog.

What merits the label of a "good" blog? Dare I ask the question. Puzzled with where mine might fit in, I ventured to find out and came up empty. So I go with my standby decision-maker. I ask the very pertinent question that every 30-something woman should ask: "What would Carrie Bradshaw do? (This game-time decision rule has gotten me into plenty of hot-messes, and equally out of them.) She would fluff her hair, light a cigarette, stare at her imac, and blog whatever she wants...simply...because she can.

After hours (ok, minutes) of research I found that a blog can do one of two things:
1.) Offer up nifty, well-crafted and usually perky tips on a number of subjects (beauty, health, being green..etc).

2.) Serve as a virtual soap-box from which one can pummel the vast abyss of information with his/her specific and invaluable "2 cents".

I have no major expertise, I offer no great and absolutely necessary guides to the world or motherhood or marriage. I did, however mull over the idea of pummelling a few subjects: "City girls guide to the suburbs" or "imommie"- a guide to all things mommy-related and how-to's on surviving the beautiful burden of having made the choice to be both a strong smart woman, and a mommie. So, I did. No one cared. Not even me.

This time, caring more, and with less specificity, I write to practice, to hone in on something that might catch me in the right creative mood, spur the interest to "go long" and finish one of the 3 novels I have started at different poignant moments in my life.

Thus, I sit here today, having searched various and fascinating blogs, having read the latest magazines about how to take time for me, or Chicago's greatest spas, and I can't help but feel like it's all been done before, said before, written before.

Except....I have to believe that what makes us so unique as humans is our quest to be so. My little lost missing piece of a blog, for example: Its weird. Its annoying. It takes turns from poems, to descriptive narrative, to random musical imagery. Who cares? I do! That's all that matters.

So, I say to the no one reading this misplaced, non-purposeful blog...Go be whatever you need to be right now. Go and fit into any category or none and feel proud that your voice is a different voice. Your tips (the way you offer them) are indeed resourceful and new to someone. Your innate ability to express the hardships and reward of marriage, motherhood, fatherhood, friendship, loss, love, world-war II memorabilia, deconstructing manga, the exciting world of crossword puzzles, is another opportunity for someone to relate. Your words might be some one's epiphany today.

The only thing I am missing is the fortitude to let go and start the journey of being rejected an exceptional amount of times in order to be taken seriously. So, in the meantime, I blip on my way in this medium. In this way. Not comparing, but embracing the reality that all of us (blogs) can exist with pure intention and a little bit of idealism.

Blog on, Bloggers!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Duets.... Do it.

There is something dubious about the visceral calm of a good harmony. The Irish have it down. Damian Rice blowed my ears off. Glen Hansard and Marketa in Once. "Falling Slowly" cuts through air and seeps into your ribcage, reshaping and winding it's way. Like a cartoon visual articulation of scent or animated ghosts, the song can surround and conquer your heart.It will haunt you weeks after. I suspect even years....

Joshua Radin is another one. When I hear: "Star Mile" I am transported to some celestial highway with a soul mate or two in the passenger seat ( everyone needs a back up if you are going to meet your day in fantasy land). Words cant even work with me when I think about the Soundstage live duet of Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham of "Say Goodbye". The pain, the human connection, the history. Link:

Perhaps it is exactly that. A connection. If a voice in song, for the sake of argument, is one experience interpreting notes, octaves and lyrical layers. Then it becomes an inspired, planned, spontaneous encounter when you add in someone else's voice.

Hearing this happen, one goes into heighten-alert, your skin reacts when they hit notes together. Sometimes ( like in Once) its even more powerful when her voice slips in, lingers and fades out, as if she is just leaving a drip of her thoughts. Consciously, not wanting to be over-bearing. You can hear her being gentle. That is a dance in sound, in intention. We hear it. We can't quite put a finger on it, but it speaks (read: sings) volumes in a sometimes emotionally-barren music world of sampling, and perky lyrics.

Harmonizing somehow can internalize a lyric, leave a footprint. Like as if to say: "here me now, I am bringing all my shite to the door, and he is bringing all his shite to the door and we are going to work it out here. Cross paths and leave a little something in the exchange." It could go a million different directions in that moment. That is living. That is the realm of possibility in duets.

Hear me later, hold me now?

Time tricks me, sticks me in a place. An emotional maze. I hear it all.
Fuzzy, soft tentacles rest on each phrase you lay, I hear and I say.
What is left of this type of love and such. Who knew? Me?You? Crush.
I don't know what I knew before. Does it matter anymore?

Zippy words and long pauses. Hold for the bait. Wait.
If longing begets faith, I have a world of measure. Not all pleasure.
Fly, taste me in the sand, the whole hearted truth from which we land.
I'll be the one who breaks my heart. Its my trait. My great, late, fate.

You felt me more last time. Your guard was faded, I was less jaded.
I dont know what I gave before. I think it was more, not sure.
"Feel it in your toes". My over-dramatic prose. What's real? What to feel?
I'll be the one who builds my heart. Wonder if you knew from the start.....

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Yoga bends my past away.

There is a direct and functional correlation of relativity between my mood and my yoga practice. I know people at my suburban gym stare at me when I hang upside down for minutes at a time, standing on my head. I don't care, being upside down helps get my head and heart right side up.

It feels like I am literally emptying all the junk that accumulates in the places like your lower back ( child stress) your neck (work stress) your feet and stomach ( personal stress). It's a long road to absolute clarity and mind quiet, so I give it a go every chance I get.

I'm not sure when Yoga became the answer, I am obsessive about most things. Yoga just ended up being a healthier habit of my obsessive habits, so it stuck. The only person who ever challenged my intensity towards it, was the same man that taught me how to teach it:

"Lulu, you have too much vata. Balance that out."

Mini Ayruvedic lesson ( for the sake of the point):
The Three Doshas: When these elemental forces appear within the human physiology they are called doshas. The three doshas are vata, the principle that governs all movement, pitta, which governs all the processes of transformation and kapha which is responsible for cohesion, growth and lubrication.

Right. Okay. So literally, I pushed really hard to learn to balance and I worked really hard at not wanting to be good at it. So, here we are and I am still competing with myself in yoga, but less then before. I am working on balancing Dosha's. I am working on using what needs to be focused. Specifically, by bending forward and standing on my head. Both these acts bring calm, and release the past.

I love that. Bending forward releases your I'm not sure if that is one of those little wisdom nuggets that manifest in a long sweaty yoga class misinterpretation or if it is truth. I go with it though. I like bending over.

If there is an absence of a focused intention, does that cosmically change the force of it all? What if I bend backwards, can I change my future? Does that absence of intent negate the possible healing effects? If not....Think of all the past(s) I have released over the years?


"No one" - Alicia Keys

"No one, NO ONE, NO ONEEEEEEEEE....can get in the way of what I'm feeling"

I love this song! Seriously. I don't own an Alicia Keys album. I heard it on some random dj spin debuting the song a few weeks back to test the water. The water is BOILING hot with happiness. This is one of those singles that manages to change your mood, lift your spirits and make you want to take two fists into your chest, bend at the knees and squeeze your face in appreciation. The major things that happen when I listen to this song:

-I engage in a slow-head-neck-lock-bop with soulfully, steady, heartfelt enthusiasm. ( There is an after-bounce its so full of love, this movement.)
-I tap my toe to the the clap-sounding beat
-I fight the incredible urge to throw my hands in the air in Mary J Blige 1995 style finger pointed up and re-pointing with every syllable.
-I smile with my liver ( ref: "Eat.Pray.Love" to understand the reference)
-I want to hug people, random people like the weird supermarket mom who always yells at her children, or the generally inconspicuously-gay tween that walks by my house from school at 3:36pm everyday.
-I want to skip down the street singing "oh, oh, oh-oh ohhhhhhhhhh"
-I want to share it. ( see link)

Love it. Stomp to it. Sing it.

"It will only get better.....Everything's gonna be alllllllright...."

grassy sand

In the summer's evening wind, she lays silently next to him. The sound of the boat ties and wood slapping the foamy surf. The sound is both predictable and soothing in it's repetition.

Warm Nantucket air permeates around the two of them, swishing sea salt lightly over their skin. Goose bumps raise the hair on her arms one by one, inch by inch standing at attention to her minds image of what will happen next, of what is about to be released and tangled in the darkening sparkle from the moon over water.

Laying with her back to him, his hands wrapped around her holding her hands, she feels safe. In this moment, the pains of everything, or all their fears melt with each tide pull. Lunar suction working with their combined energy, erasing the wrongs, smoothing out the ridges. Eroding the past and present.

The two of them seeming as one silhouette on the blanket in the sand. She hears the sound of her heart beat melodically in her ears, the tingle in the space a the top of her tummy. She has to remind her self to inhale, and the exhale slowly deflates her into his chest. His chest lowers with her in almost simultaneous motion.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Music made me do it.

In the early inception stages of making mates, even merely contemplating spending more time with a man....two major things go through my unorganized contraption of a mind. These two things can part the seas of emotion and rationale. These two things can categorically establish a clear signal as to my interest or lack there of ( aside from the obvious physical attraction). These are not the two ONLY factors, just the two FIRST factors.

1.) What kind of lover he might be? 2.) What kind of music does he like?

Only one can (usually) be deciphered in a matter of we'll stick with the definitive of the two. You can tell a lot about a person by their music taste. I personally get a feel for who they are, by understanding what they like to listen to. Taste, meaning the norm,not the album list they throw out when asked the question. These are two VERY different things. I wish the ipod existed when I was in the "thick of it" all. I could have simply met men at bars, and in barter for a phone number requested what albums were on circular shuffle rotation.

Even better, I bet you could "swipod". Switch em'. Sit with his tastes, and styles for a few days, learning about him, guessing what each song meant. Men clearly have sex songs. ( my husband did all his girlfriends to Maxwell or Enigma) I prefer Van Morrison or something with a bluesy outdoor concert type of sound, or the sweet brush on drum symbol(tiss-siisss-a tiss)but I'm letting go of the point here..

It's the most intricate and beautiful of secrets...a man's music taste. They all have a standard list of what they THINK they love: "Modest Mouse, DMB, The Killers, AC/DC, Pearl Jam, Jay Z, Death Cab..." but if you stole their ipod you would find, perhaps: Billy Joel, Devo, the soundtrack to "Once- the motion picture", maybe even the Beegees, and Beach Boys. You get my point.

So it's impossible to get a real taste. I think what makes a man sexy is his lack of conformity and appreciation for different styles. But that's not fair, of course there is some conformity, there is something truly annoying about the guy that tries too hard to be obscure. There is a balance. I'm not sure what it is. I know this. You are not getting this chick out of her Vickie's without at least SOME of the following:

Van Morrison, Cat Stevens, some strange jazz that freaks me out a little ( not Miles Davis), country like Randy Travis, Waylan Jennings, Meryl Haggard, The eagles, Jim Croce, Nina Simone or Billie Holiday, The Shins, The Rolling Stones, Fletwood MacThe Ramones, Morrissey, The Cure, Common, Jay Z, Justin Timerblake ( I could take or leave), Erasure, INXS, DMB, almost anything with harmony, Eurythymics, A few Hard-rock picks, John Mayer ( who cant appreciate the lyrics?) something forlorn and sad, maybe some lone-irish folk artist he could teach me about, The cranberries, or some slow classical, or purely orchestral, The Bodeans, The samples, Led Zeplin, Don Mclean, Lionel Richie, Rod Stewart and a few really random song-writers...maybe like the neo-african percussionist that used to smack beats for Sting named Mino that....It's ridiculous, I know... What I am not including is all the 90's music that ages me and makes me really dig someone. If he knows the lines to a Coolio song, or maybe even a little "Joy and Pain". It is completely subjective which is why this is my idea of the perfect mix. Oh! and black smith lady mumbasa.

I like a man to be full of predictible good choices, with some random smile-inducing surprises that remind me of my youth and make me want to get silly and serious with equal ferver.

Things that would be deal breakers for me:
-house, happy house, trance, showtunes, remixes of anything on B.96, Barbara Striestand, Gloria Estifan, Celine Dion, Pink Flyod, The Doors(Sorry, I know, I respect them as musicians, I hate the sound), Kenny G, 2live crew( the album cover still hurts my eyes),

I will keep working on this.....forever.

If it were up to me

If it were up to me I think you’d see what I see.
If love were less grainy I would shape it like sand, using my hand,
If your eyes were less green and your tone less mean, I think I’d have a stance
To love whole-heartedly, look away from the chance, this dismal happenstance.

If I were a poet I would bleed as I write.
If truth was an answer, Id be free to be me now in the moment and for a life,
If your words were less loaded and your smile less fake, I’d believe.
Your actions and your heart, contradiction in parallels making it easy for me to deceive.

If only ends didn’t really begin, and what was stayed the same
If wanting and needing could live as one in unified satisfaction, if there was no attraction,
If your hands that used to touch the naked space between my hips and navel
It is the path of mourning souls in denial, that’s what makes him able.

And so we trample on…pieces of heart, emotional strings and idea’s of self in the wake
We make no time for sweet justice or compromising slides, we trudge through to be through…and like waves of life and sadness the erosion begins, leaving traces of where the tide used to be, where the love and laughter used to reach..the limits the heights and we sink the eyes, bow the chin and push on…

..if it were up to me I think you’d see what I see…you see all of it, and all of me.

blog is the new something...

If I was thirteen....I would say:

"Blog off."
"Here's a web page, blog someone who cares."
Instead of "take a chill pill" try, "Go blog."
"Blog it, it last longer."
"Im totally blogging that you said that."
"Her blog said you boinked her!"
"Blog stalker.."

Wow...that right there? How the teenage heartache and heart ship has been tweaked by email, cell phones, IM, blogs....yikes. My misery and learning was limited to my spiral-bound journals and maybe, if I felt really inspired one of the token library computers at the "computer lab".

Oh the drama that must ensue due to this immediacy, this 24/7 availability. I am now grateful that in my day there was no fear of record. The best I did was get a friend to either make an "emergency break-through" on the phone or sit and listen If I called a "three-way". Those were the days....

Light on "love"

Many men have stepped into the light, the hot, bright spot light of my love, shining singly onto them. It has the ability, as it should, to lift all the best attributes he may or may not posses, and bring them to the surface, from far beneath. It can penetrate so powerfully, taking over all the little slights and mistakes he has grown into.
Without his own doing this light creates what it is I want to see, at least in that very moment, not needing his approval nor his intentions.

Some men have tried mirrors. Tried to shine the light back, to see if I can play at my own game, and I can. I absorb the light, reconstruct it regaining power like the eye of a reflective storm and sting ray back at him in fifty different directions, piercing all the half-truths and idealisms he believed he could stand on, when basking in her light, he saw his best self. Mere image projected, not reality.

Some men dodge the light swaying and bending backwards to seem aloof and uncouth to the surge it causes, the longing he possesses to be within inches of her, to be inside her, to be seen as she sees him. But this also fails to defeat the light, I can change the lights direction in a matter of letters, words, looks. It is futile in attempt to dodge, and frankly is the making, the contents of my existence, thereby totally prey to demise.

When the interest is gone, when the light of my love proves, as it always has, that its subject is not the creation of my minds wildest and most passionate frames, that is when the light moves. It can go left, to right, forward or behind, in its single ring of deception. Deceiving all and not its source, the truth is unavailable to be hidden. Men are human, and human is all the things the light tries to hide.

Many men have stepped into the light, the hot bright spot light of my love. And many, but not all have failed to stay standing, under its rays. Many have not lured me to come into the shot, but one man, who’s intentions and persistence were pure. The one man who knew that light can bend, and light can be absorbed quietly without revelation. He, the one who holds my hand now, has the light…the light of my love in his hand.

Dangers in Maybe (past love delusions)

Here it comes again, the flush of blood rushing from my heart, beating to test me.
It feels new, fresh like the smell of wet grass and hot harbor water in the air.
Not lost per say, not that way, left by circumstance, and now its happenstance.
I shed forlorn, I dispose of the shroud that hides what he meant for this girl inside.

Time moved on, men and loss and fear walls built, and so the memory of him did wilt.
Never forgotten, foolish and free, no judgment or expectation, a little frustration,
He hides that I mean something more than sweet sounding words
We both know the mind-beam I shine in the darkness and ho-hum, what a conundrum?

I want to love him in some way, but I don’t think we did. I’m quite comfortably caged, and aged, and wiser
There is something in his restraint, the draw to come closer in a subtlety, in him, in me.
I still see the kindness in his eyes penetrate the lies.
Holding hands meant being a part of him, claiming property in his heart, so visceral from the start.

Here it comes again, this foolish rush of memory, fading the lines of what I shouldn’t say
Too much can be given away. It’s true what I feel, and wrong that its still there, but I continue to bare.
The beginning of something, once started, no closure to fear, no open wounds to scar, its come this far.
Maybe its illusion, escape to something I conjure to justify the effects of his new presence

If it’s all false and unreal, I can recoil, instead of un-peel. Thousands of reasons say leave it alone.
Explaining wouldn’t work, It doesn’t make sense. He slithered beneath my skin, into the core.
Something from him is in me, and I apologize not for the sunken, now surfacing.
I’m not tortured, but not tame, seeking a glimpse that he felt the same.

….And I will wait patiently. Everything can fade, maybe this will, but life has a funny way of being a poetic stream of what could have been, and what does, and circles form, and disappear and bring it back moons after the fact.
Anything is possible, maybe never, and that would suffice, but maybe in itself is a supple sweet surprise

Dont-Change list

So I was thinking....

I have a police officer friend who says entire empire's have risen and fallen by those words. I use them a lot.

People spend so much time making lists. A woman is publishing a book on "to-do lists". People have parties about it now, and celebrate old lists they have found, new lists they are building, funny lists that make them take a deeper look at themselves. What about a "Don't-change" list?
What if we took some time out every day, or once a week to literally put to paper the things we LIKE about our lives. I know it's a strange request, but maybe it will spin the internal voice to a sunnier disposition. Let me throw one out there:

1.) Dont change the way fire places smell like fall and family and warmth.
2.) Dont change that its uncool for men to pee sitting down.
3.) Dont change the meaning of the word: "ironic". It's confusing enough in this age of satire.
4.) Dont change my voice, I have spent 30 years getting used to manipulating it to sound sexy, or funny or serious.
5.) Dont change my cell phone memory. I have everyone programmed into my phone, but I still type-dial every time I call someone.
6.) Dont change the time or day of my favorite shows on TV. I look forward to things. It took a year to get used to Grey's moving to Thursday.
7.) Dont change how you can always tell what I've eaten by whats on my chest. Seriously, and I dont have a big chest at all.
8.)Dont change how husbands now chip in WAY more than 20 years ago.
9.) Dont change the packaging label on my favorite foods. My eyes can't scan every single cereal type because your focus-group showed that 62% of women prefer the color purple to red.
10.) Dont change that its inappropriate to smell your food before eating it. I love doing that. (and I love being inappropriate)

Happy how?......exactly?

I was talking to a co-worker today. We have talked about this before. What is "happiness"? "You mean, like define it?" one of us predictably asks the other, and then the conversation unfolds, often into exceptionally different places every time. Each time feeling a little bit more clear, a tinge more crisp, the way you can see refreshingly well after putting in a new pair of contacts, or perfectly prescript set of glasses. The grain in the cement seems apparent. The veins in the leaves contrast the color and shape of things. So does the sight of understanding happiness in one's own mind and heart.

I was driving in the cold, muggy weird weather of autumn ending and the half-way place before Thanksgiving arrives. The stores are putting up lights, but not lighting them. Christmas trees are embarrassed to be in the windows because the leaves are still beaming yellow due to the mild temperatures ( due to the melting glaciers). I look around and feel mildly melancholic. There is an air of holiday cheer peaking its turtle head and then being sucked back in by the immediate realization of the future scurrying and stress of people, planning, presents, food, the expectation of gratitude and general euphoria. So, the question buoyantly pops back up.

Almost as if on cue, Sheryl Crows: "Soak up the Sun" streams into the car radio as I am using my index finger to flip through channels. I hear the lines: "Its not getting what you want/It's wanting what you've got.". At first, I'm annoyed with my commercialism and emotional neediness to find meaning in a pop song. But it is a profound lyric. Obviously, the type of lyric that I have probably sang, and let go unnoticed for years. I firmly believe moments, songs, books choose you. Not because there is some cosmic force, but because we are open to receiving them.

This idea works on many levels. The same way you notice a word for the first time and you use it, test it, realize no one calls your bluff on knowing its definition and then all of a sudden that word is everywhere. Every one is using it. Mine for this quarter is "fruition". I hear it every where, commercials, work meetings. How did I possibly not notice it before? Then I think, are people collaboratively sitting in a room waiting to launch words back into the general population like a verbal phonic-version of email "FW"'s?

I think maybe, happiness is a work-in-progress evolution. A project that will constantly shift and reshape as our lives do. The fruition of it is not really a place, or a projection of successes as we define them. It cant possibly be finding the right love. That love will change. It cant be growing a huge family of children. If done correctly, they(well-adjusted children) will want to be independent of you. It has to be a true and accepting state of being in one's self. I think happiness isn't a grand or exact moment. I think it is a fluttering fluid emotional state that is EXACTLY that. A state of emotion, open to change at any given moment. The signs of it's fruition is a gradient of self-love, acceptance and transparent barrier to the external factors that can deplete it. Instead of being some idea we chase, or some concept we seek. What if it is with us, all the time hiding under all the tarps of self-loathing, judgement and negativity we throw at ourselves. After all, the bad stuff is easier to believe. Which is unbelievable....really.

Today I think happiness is building a centered, honest place inside yourself that accepts who you are and holds it with sheer commitment to evolving with you, learning to deal with what you have and make it work FOR you. It is changing moment to moment, with you, it is you. If you are willing to receive it.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mr. Mister....eighties redux.

Broken Wings. You can hear the base line....bum, bum, bum-ba bum...then the synthesized keyboard, wait for it....the electric guitar playing three chords. It's not music, but it takes my broken brain and sends me back to a time where music decided to throw in the proverbial towel and get silly. Really silly.

If music in the 80's were a tween at the first co-ed dance, it ran from the wall in Anthony-Michael Hall fashion, stripped off the polo-flipped-collar which reveled it's "Tiffany" t-shirt underneath and started whipping around in perfect minimalist melodramatic movement. It decided that being cool didn't matter. That excess and cheesiness was being explored and celebrated in all facets of music and it made more sense than this analogy to just go with it.

Here we are approaching the end of 2007 and everywhere you look the 80's are back in aces. It's in the puffed sleeve variation of blouses. (thank god shoulder pads didn't make the Milan runways!) I know for a fact that I swore I would never wear leggings again. My consession is that I wont wear the stirrups. But I saw those in a boutique...Men are wearing tapered black denim jeans, and every cool bar you go to has some strange remix of an old one-hit wonder 80's tune. I actually heard a high-schooler say: "we are totally into that stuff from back in the eighties". Back?

I am rediscovering music that changes my physiology. I first noticed it when I was drawn to musicians that sang in falsetto, a lot. Josh Rouse, Josh Kelly, even Maroon 5 starting doing it, and then I realized, they are tapping into what made some of the best music from 1987 the best. Who can not want to air-hump a 4-foot speaker to New Order's "Blue Monday"? I'm dead serious. Try NOT jerking your body around and looking for the nearest thing to palm both hands with and pelvic thrust to that song.....Who can dismiss such frivolously serious lyrics as those in Crowded House's "Don't dream its over" ( Catch a devil with a paper cup/Towing my car...hole in the room?) Get serious! Hey now, what the shite are you saying? But it works...It's the eighties. Nothing made sense. I love that.

Look, I could judge it, or I could just say: "I am so on this rad band-wagon. It's the most!" It brings me back to a time where I was still wide-eyed and eager to impress. Where I would spend 3/4 of my morning curling my bangs and feathering. I didn't care about aerosol cans, cause no one did. MTV played Phil Collins and music all the time. The War wasn't on Terror it was on Drugs, I dreamt only of my next boyfriend to hold my hand neatly wrapped in rubber bracelets, A swatch-pop watch and string-friendship bands or winning the speed skate at the roller rink. If I can find that type of purity in some fiendishly fun music in a time where everyone is serious, and anxious and waiting for the world to change....( couldn't help myself) then so be it.

When Frankie says relax. I listen.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Heart-Slides (noun.)

Heart-Slide (n.): When one's passion/emotional affections shift either for the betterment or demise of one's emotional purpose with another person, object or thought.

Ie. Seeing Conlin for the first time since our last escapade made me swallow hard and bargain with my lungs to inhale. He didn't look the same, the way going to an amusement park after all these years, doesn't. The colors are faded, nothing, in size or mass meets your memories expectations. What stands between memory and my immediate reality is palpable, and there is a new and exciting air about it all. I notice things I didn't before, things that have been added or rehabbed in my absence. Other women's imprints, life lived.

But like the scent of cotton-candy and sweaty, beach-sanded children reminds me of of happy childhood, his smell takes me back to first love. The walls I have summoned over the years to guard me, drop. The anticipation that bubbled my stomach only minutes before we lock eyes, ceases. He holds his emotions at a distance...defiant almost, but if I pay true attention; It is always has been.

I actually heard my heart-slide like a boulder shifting away from the opening of a tomb. There was light again on this sordid wound that has made me who I am, what I am, and how I love possible. Here we are, and all I can feel is love and light.

Something bold in bald

Is it me or has anyone noticed that there are no more bald men in the main-stream media of America? Is it not a little ridiculous?Yes, I have an affinity to older men. Yes, I like salt n pepper hair, I like laugh lines and crows feet, that show a man's history. Like sycamore tree rings show age, so does a man's face. It's telling, sexy even. Sure, its probable that I have daddy-issues, but its also equally probable that I think their is grace in growing old, and being more comfortable as time takes your superficial powers. A man is left with who he is, and his experiences. Thats double sexy.

I ask the question only because I am starting to realize that more men are doing whatever hair magic they do to avoid aging. I love my ideal of a "real man" not jumping into the age-fearing masses that are pulling up to the Propecia PEZ dispensers. I love that my ideal man looks Old man-Age,Mother-Time, and judgement in the eyes, throws his flippant hands to the air and says: "yeah? so? I am getting older, deal with it." Where is he?!

It feels like more men are hip-checking the mid-life divorcee's out of the line at the cosmetic counter to by the latest age-defying cream, then running home secretly applying it while looking at a picture of Jon bon Jovi and his recently (and curiously) new perfectly coiffed hair. What is happening!?

Perhaps its the fact that all the baby boomers are reaching the ripe old age of a consumer jackpot to market to these products, maybe I have never been paying attention to older men, maybe I'm the one out of the loop, but show me ONE movie star whose forehead moves when her eyebrows do, or ONE male anchor who isn't wearing makeup. Show me a Hollywood woman with silver hair. Fine...there are age-with-attitude pioneers out there somewhere by the mere handfuls. I want throws of people, I want media iconoclasts. I want to see fearlessness.

Speaking of fear, I guess I am just apprehencious of my imminent, but decade-off entrance into a society that would rather have you buy their pills because pharmacuteical companies buy their ad air time. A society where women actually react and respond to the commercials that show a 17 year old pretending to be a 30 year-old "confessing" her age. Where female consurmers watch "The Age of Love" a reality show where 40 yr old women are pitted against idiotic 20 somethings to win the love of a famous tennis player, and we are entertained. I am not certain these creams AREN'T making our women infertile and our men look like women. What on earth is it going to be when I get there? I will take a crack at it:

9 year old girls will be getting porcelain veneers instead of braces, and taking exercise pills to fight childhood obesity, women my age will be doing the knew nano--micro-elastin-tuck-technique that zaps your aging cells every time you use a the microwave to make your 3-course premade-pre-frozen dinner for the family who are either talking to their friends on their hologram phones that will turn into cancer machines, while the husband is rubbing the magic cream that takes pubic hair and cultivates it into thick bushy Mc-Dreamy ( or Steamy- whom I prefer- because he is grey, of course) field of wild and messy youth on his head.

Let's have a beauty revolution, better yet, lets just be OK with being older. Well, why don't you get better at it, so I can be more comfortable inching towards that direction.......Deal.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Who the feck cares?

Okay, let me go ahead and lay it out there: I don't believe anyone cares about what my daily routine is, how the sun setting at just the right angle over the windshield set my heart all soggy and warm to inspire me, or what my child is doing on a daily basis. I get it. I am here, writing, simply....because I love to write. I need to write. It is a passion I have, I am saturated with my thoughts and feelings, and here ( lets be honest) is a forum in which I feel like I need to be somewhat formal, but really... No one is listening (read: reading).

I am your run of the mill basic woman who has done quite a lot in my 3 decades. I don't presume that you will be so moved or peaked by my stories, thoughts and recollections, but I have been told I can write some decently purdy-word-trains, so I try. I try to keep flowing, I try to find substance in the mediocre, I try and reconcile my many many many mistakes, and laugh at them. Its hard to laugh from the inside out, try it. No really...try it.

I am christening this page with nonsense to be added to the ominous nonsense of free will and free intellectual space. I speak to the masses of nobody who barely have time to stop to listen to themselves think. Those same people that rush around making e-reservations to sit in a place that sells food and "bottle service" where they can text and IM on their blackberries at the same table. I am sending my tiny little shock-wave out into this oblivion and hoping, if nothing else, to hone in on my own skills as a budding novelist.

Thank you very much no one, for being here to receive it.