August 20, 2016

Everything I Don't Write Is Full of So Much I Can't Say

I am addicted to cold brew coffee.

I am not wearing this like a badge. I’m just telling you what has recently developed in my life. 

The funny thing is, I had my first cold brew last week and haven’t stopped since.  Cold brew coffee and half n half, no sweetener.  It’s bomb.  So much so, that three days this week I had TWO of them in one day.  Not a good idea, but it was fun while it was happening.  It’s like drugs without drugs. (   I’ve been needing drugs lately.) I even bought a cheap cold-brew ‘system’ which is basically a pitcher with a coffee filter dropped into the middle of it.  I made it for the first time last night. Poured it into my gullet this morning.  So good.

I think this is better than the vodka addiction I usually have.  So, trading up…. (?)

I look forward to weekends now.  I mean, I guess I always did, but now it’s a big red balloon.  It fills and rises first thing Monday morning; what can I do this weekend that will make me have something to look forward to?  What sort of distraction can I occupy myself with?  What can I do that will fill this gaping hole?  

Thoughts of this; how I fill my weekdays.  It’s a sport.

At first, it was a calming.  A clapping of sandals and a settling of dust motes through sunlight.  A deep breath, released.  And now.  Now it is oozing and raw.  A hole to put stones inside.

I’ve been re-reading Stephen King’s (:::sign of the cross, kiss fingers, nod up to sky:::::)  Dark Tower series. I wanted to re-read it before the movie came out, refresh my memory.  It’s been at least 12 years since I read the last book in the series (and CRIED knowing it was over) and at least 33 years since I opened up the first book.  It’s been great being able to binge-read them instead of waiting YEARS in between each release.

I’ve rediscovered my heart in these books.  How much the thrill of the quest claims me.  I’ve recognized parts of my (YET FUCKING UNSOLD) novel in these books.  Realizing how deeply this story rooted itself in me, how I carried it into adulthood and seeped it out into my own story. 

I’m in the middle of book 4, Wizard and Glass, and I’m loving it. All of it.  Can wait for the next book and the next and the next.

Meanwhile, all the ‘current’ books I want to read are stacking up in a TOWER on my bedside table.  I will get to them eventually.  For now, I’m on Roland’s quest, trying to hold on to the face of my father.

Here’s what you need to know: a)  I am, as you have seen, writing again, albeit tiny. It’s millimeters more than I had been.  I call it victory.  An unblemishing. I am starting to see and feel the shine.  (and oh how that feels!) b)  I am also eating properly.  Making smallest progress but progress nonetheless.  It’s, finally, exciting.  Something that is not a prison anymore.  I’m so tired of all my prisons it’s nice to be (so far) free of one of them. c) I am letting myself hate this.  Letting myself feel how shitty this is.  Making myself ask myself how long I want to endure this prison. Self-flagellation   d) I am watching the Olympics instead of my regular shows.  I like witnessing history. I like bearing witness to the life dreams of others becoming reality. Watching them cry with ultimate joy.  It’s beautiful.  e) I’m doing my best to live as half which is completely contrary to how it is supposed to be.

August 17, 2016

Dark Fucking Wizard

I wrote a thing for DFW and here it is

August 08, 2016

Looking For Meaning In Quiet Moments

There’s a squirrel that has been terrorizing my dogs for the past few years. I’m assuming it’s the same squirrel but maybe it’s different squirrels but whatever the case, they all do the same thing;  run along my back fence over to the telephone pole and while my dogs bark at them.  Typically, after the squirrel hits the pole, they stay there, upside down, just out of reach of the dog until they drive the dog sufficiently crazy and then they will just run up the pole and down the wire to probably terrorize the next backyard pooch.

(I say ‘dogs’ but really I mean ‘dog’.  But one dog dies, I get another dog, squirrel continues terrorizing.)

I was outside reading over the weekend and here comes the squirrel.  I eyeball it and it ignores me, runs along my fence going west, up the pole, over the wire on his little squirrely way.

About 15 minutes later I see him scrambling back but this time he has a huge dark ‘rock’ in his mouth. I was like, wtf.  That can’t be a rock.  How is he holding a rock in his mouth?  I watched him get closer.  He stops and takes a breather on the telephone pole and I see it’s not a rock but a BABY SQUIRREL!!!  My dog teasing squirrel is a MOM squirrel!

She rests for a bit and then heads down the pole to the fence and scampers past me with her baby in her mouth.  It was a really cool moment.  Like, me and nature and that’s all.  I figured she was just moving her nest for whatever real estate reasons squirrels have.

About 20 minutes goes by and here she comes again, back down the fence, up the pole, across the wire.  I wondered if she would come back with another one and about 15 minutes later, she did!

Across the wire, a short pole rest, down the pole, across the fence to who knows where.  So cute.  The little baby just curled up, hanging from his mom’s mouth.

Then, she comes back again.  I again wondered if she’d come back with another baby.  After a while she did.  But this time my dog had joined me. 

She took her pole rest and headed down to my back fence.  But as soon as her feet hit the back fence, my dog perked up and noticed his nemesis sitting on ‘his’ back fence. 

The squirrel noticed him noticing and froze. They sat there that way for a moment and I waited to see what would happen.

As if a gun went off they both took off running at the same time.  The squirrel ran across the fence to the point where it runs behind the house and I can’t see it anymore.  My dog does too. But as soon as they disappear I hear a tiny SCREE! SCREE! SCREE! type of crying noise and I was like OH FUCK SHE DROPPED IT AND MY DOG IS EATING IT OMGOMGOMG!!!! So I jumped out of my seat and ran around the house and ….nothing. 

My dog was there looking like he lost and I followed the SCREE SCREE noise and saw the squirrel running down my neighbor’s fence and then up into a giant palm tree.  The new home.

As I stood there, peering through the slatted fence, I noticed my neighbor standing in his back window, also watching the squirrel.  He didn’t see me.  But there we were standing quietly watching this squirrel transfer her babies into the palm tree. 

It was a nothing moment but yet it felt like something.  I’m not sure why.

I walked back to my book and thought about the SCREE SCREE sounds and figured that when mommy squirrel saw my dog coming she bit down harder than she wanted to.  Bit down into her baby so she could run as fast as possible in order to save them both.  Her baby screaming in her mouth as she ran for their lives. She caused her baby pain so they both could make it to safety.  A necessary lesser of two evils.  

A way to survive.

August 04, 2016

Writing Like a "Normal Person"

Yesterday I had a “work lunch” in a restaurant like a normal person.  I ordered a Cobb Salad but this was a ‘fancy style’ one and it had steak and balsamic vinaigrette. Balsamic vinaigrette seems wrong to put on a Cobb salad so I decided to swap it out for Bleu Cheese dressing so when the lady took my order I said, ‘Oh, and can I have a side of Bleu cheese please?”  She said yes and I felt happy about my forthcoming lunch and continued talking with my boss and coworkers like a normal person.

My salad came and it looked nice.  Then the lady set down a little silver container of Bleu cheese crumbles.  Hmph, I thought, staring at the little silver container of Bleu cheese crumbles while the rest of the plates were placed on the table.  It was then I realized that I hadn’t quite made myself clear when asking for a side of “Bleu Cheese”.  In my head, I felt I’d implied the dressing ‘swap’ from Balsamic vinaigrette to Bleu cheese but if I put myself on the receiving end of our exchange, I realized that I’m just a customer who ordered a salad that already came with bleu cheese who then asked for even MORE bleu cheese.  Like, I was a person who was ‘crazy for bleu cheese’.  Maybe even a ‘bleu cheese fanatic’.  The lady probably gets crazier food requests so she didn’t bat an eyelash or even question my request for a ‘side of bleu cheese’ for a salad that already had bleu cheese on it. 

My mistake, leaving out the key word, “dressing.” 

So, I ate my balsamic vinaigretted Cobb Salad like a normal person.  The small, silver container of Bleu cheese sitting alongside my plate, silently mocking me.

The salad was okay with the balsamic vinaigrette, but the entire time I knew how much awesomer it would’ve been with the Bleu cheese.

I should’ve just asked for a side of Ranch and she would’ve immediately have been clear, because….what would she’d have served me ‘by mistake’? A small, western replica of a ranch??! No. She would’ve understood I meant ‘dressing,’ Like a normal person.

After we paid and left the table, I wondered what the lady would think when she found the small, silver container of Bleu cheese still full, untouched, sitting beside my empty plate.  A ‘Blue cheese nut’ who orders a side of Bleu cheese and just lets it sit there, uneaten.  She probably thought I had some sort of ‘power complex’, ordering sides of wacky shit just because I could.  I don’t know.  But I still am wondering what she wondered back about me, a ‘normal’ person.