Don’t be afraid to be confused. Try to remain permanently confused. Anything is possible. Stay open, forever, so open it hurts, and then open up some more, until the day you die, world without end, amen.
George Saunders

Sunday, September 28, 2014

le weekend scene

I have been experimenting with online guided meditation this past week and yesterday I attempted one related to lovingkindness. Which turned out to be difficult and painful. I was joking around at my volunteer job with one of the staff, and he said he didn't have a heart, just a heart shaped block of ice in his chest. Don't even talk to me about walls, I said, and saw recognition in his face. The  weekend though has been quite pleasant after a particularly tough week--hang-out time, pizza and art with my favorite 12-year-old; a sunny afternoon at a friend's house sipping rose and girl-talking; then a clothes and accessories swap hosted by a neighborhood pal, in an artsy loft retreat in the middle of downtown.
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The top picture is a design by Hammy, images cut out of a magazine and pasted into my drawing book. The other one is the sky last night at the 255 bus stop in Kirkland.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

and around here we call it

I was talking to a trusted confidant recently about being spanked as a kid. I don't mean the occasional swat. I mean on the reg punishment, skirt hiked up, panties pulled down, full-on hit on the bottom with a ping pong paddle, a belt, a wooden spoon, a hand--hit and hit and hit until my father or mother deemed the penalty was sufficient. I wasn't allowed to cry, either, to "beller," as my father put it. Afterward, whoever had dealt the beating would read me bible verses and tell me they loved me, and then I'd cry. I felt so humiliated and ashamed and angry.
Spanking has been the topic du jour in the media the past few days, with a football player in trouble for beating his four-year-old kid (article on WaPo). That led me to bell hooks on Justice: Childhood Love Lessons.
And to this: why you should never.
Even the New Yorker weighed in.
So what about me, now? I don't know what it all means, exactly.
Except as my confidant put it, around here we call that abuse.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

lady don't tek no

Coming up tomorrow! These fine fellas, at Nectar:

Monday, September 8, 2014

i need dis

A guy on the street told me a joke yesterday. "What's the best vitamin for friendship?"
I was in a hurry and wished, just once, not to get chatted up. But, I summoned up patience and said, as I walked past, "I don't know, what?"
"B-1," he chortled. "Have a great day."
It was Hammy's 12th birthday and my Sid and I treated her to a decadent brunch including fresh hot cinnamon-sugar doughnuts with tiny bowls of mascarpone and currant jam. I gave her a card with moustaches on it (the inside also wished a happy birthday to a handsome fellow, which I had to X out, oops), and some flowers, and gift cards, and chocolate-covered nougat from De Laurenti. She's got so much confidence and talent and she's developing into such a lovely girl. I hope she knows how much I love and treasure her.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

sum-sum-summah

Yup, August is in the can. The month started out strong, with girls' night at a friend-chef-coolgirl's house up north. We drank wine on a hot summer evening, we watched her chickens run around and ate delicious snacks and drank homemade limoncello and laughed at wisdom teeth videos. I got 2 of my nails did. What a treat.Then, Friday was Gaga, rescheduled at Key Arena, and I was less excited for the show (my 3rd time seeing her) than to hang out with good pals over salt-n-pepper tofu and drinks. I met a new friend and closed out the night by myself, at the neighborhood hot dog cart, treading lightly on my high heeled wedges. Two days later--Book of Mormon, with my sis. We pre-funked nearby on happy hour martinis and potato nachos. Mmmph. I checked out Radiator Whiskey a couple nights later with some pals. My neighbor and her rad husband work there and the whiskey drinks were stellar (and a lil spendy). It was a tough night--I got some news I didn't want to hear--but, now I know what's up, for real, and now I can proceed.
The next night was a good friend-artist's birthday party on the hill. Imagine cucumber and gin drinks, an outdoor patio, a warm summer evening, scads of friends--yes.
Next up--Trombone Shorty at the zoo. Big ups to the big man for a hott show. And a loud chorus of boo's to the zoo for pretty much fucking up everything you could want in a venue: letting kids--babies!--in for free, operating two miniscule beer gardens with zero view of the stage, and no extra bathrooms, meaning females spent a good ten to fifteen minutes waiting to pee. Parents--you're in trouble too. Spring for a babysitter you fucking cheapskates, so the rest of us can enjoy the show without smelling shitty diapers or listening to your kid whine. And to the lady who tried to make 2 dudes sit down so she could see--ha ha. Kudos guys for laughingly saying no.
A few days later I hopped in a car with my Sid and Hammy and we headed up to Vancouver. A pit stop at Duty Free for whiskey, and then onward to Granville Island and our party pad. The visit was stressful and fun and maddening and a little melancholy. During the ceremony's mini-sermon, hate settled in the air like a choking gloom. I looked around afterward at these smiling people, invoking a deity and passing judgement. Ah, no.
On Saturday, I was home by 7pm and in a Zipcar by 8 to check out a friend's housewarming. I got there in good time but it was a bust; people were settled in, comfortable in their party cliques,  not inclined to extend themselves, and so I was on the road again by 9.30. Mid-week I met up with a good pal to catch up after her month away meditating. She's gorgeous and smart and we egg each other on in the best possible way. When I left her at the bar, one of the owners was chatting her up. Girl got game.
The last Saturday was me and Hammy, on the road to the coast to do some trailer repair and generally hang out. By Sunday I was dragging, but I had breakfast and bloody mary's with a good pal, catching up on news--a funeral, a surly ex, a sick parent.
The news continues relentlessly. And so do we.