Friday, July 13, 2007

pink raft

This past weekend was, how shall I say it? Not what I expected.

I go through phases of feeling friendless. Though, truth be told, I have many wonderful friends. Distance, children, jobs and sheer flakiness keep us apart. This past Saturday, all those things came together in a way that resulted in: I had no plans. So, I made a plan. If I plan to sit by the pool all day reading my pile of books, then I am actually doing something. So that was it. The plan was made.

I packed up my books, put on an old ratty swimsuit, foregoing a shower, as it would just be me. I read for a little while, warming up under the sun. Then, I pulled out my new pink raft I'd just picked up at the drugstore. Truth be told, it is the first raft I have ever bought. I have always relied on the kindness of others for my rafting needs. I blew that thing until my cheeks were stinging and I was light headed. Just as I put my new pink raft in the pool, and readied myself to join it, I heard cars pulling up the drive.

Family members of the home owner, and entourage had decided to utilize the pool; again. (They'd already taken over the 4th of July.)

There I was, not really in a position to be seen. I scurried home to make myself slightly more presentable. I returned to the pool, not quite knowing what to do with the rest of my day. I sat and tried to make conversation....which lasted about 5 minutes. I wasn't really part of the group. All manner of negative things popped into my head. I won't repeat them. I will say I am terribly jealous of the niece, who had a lovely wedding in her 20's, married to a great guy and they've just recently added a daughter to their household. She has everything I have ever dreamed of; so when her husband jumped in the pool and lounged on my new pink raft, it was too much.

I said good bye, and slunk down to my cottage with a little Eeyore cloud following me. I tried to read, but reading on my couch on a lovely summer day felt so, well, uncomfortable. Then I dozed a little. Finally, I called a friend in the city, and though we had plans for Sunday, we switched things up and decided I'd drive down and have dinner with her, the new boyfriend and his visiting friend.

Off I went, with some nebulous plan of dinner with friends and strangers. About 20 minutes into my drive, I get a phone call. Can I pick up the guys on my way into the city? They've biked over the Golden Gate Bridge and missed the ferry by minutes. Um, sure. I'll pick them up. Two men I've never met, and two bicycles. I would fit them in my car; along with the bag of clothes I brought not knowing what kind of evening to dress for, the blanket, towel, sleeping bag and pillow that seem to permanently live in my trunk, because you never know when the camping bug will hit. Oh, and about 6 jackets and sweaters that never made it back in the house. And some books. Somehow, after much tugging and such, we latched the trunk and were on our way.

Some very scandalous driving later and a rendezvous to pick up the friend, and we wound up at a crepe house, eating copious amounts of food. It was a lovely evening. I forgot about my new pink raft and savored the moment.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Kellogg made your kid fat

Kellogg made your kids fat.
What kind of a world do we live in that Tony the Tiger has more power over kids than parents?
I just read an article on the net that Kellogg is going to reformulate their products to have more nutritional value. This in respone to the threat of a lawsuit from parents and advocacy groups. Don't get me wrong, I think sugared cereal is the devil. It just seems like the world is out of control, that's all. People's entire careers are based on manipulating young minds to buy their product. And then when that works, another group of people make a career out of suing those people.
Where are the parents in all this? The branding works because kids are sitting in front of TVs hours on end. They're soaking in whatever advertisers want them to; and oh, they're bored out of their minds and eating to pass the time.
I do think it's good that there is some regulation in advertising. It just makes me sad that we're a society of babies that need our hands held and blame everything on someone else. Maybe if parents spent some time with the kids instead of parking them in front of the tube, maybe, just maybe they wouldn't get to be obese. Why don't those advocacy groups that sue advertisers sue parents for being lazy and neglectful. Oh, right, where's the money in that?

Monday, June 04, 2007

If only I were a camera

This was a weekend full of photos. Too bad I am not a camera, nor do I own one, nor could I have always had it out in enough time to catch all the sights of this past weekend.
It was a lovely busy weekend of concerts outside, trail clean-up, and perhaps a cocktail or two.

How do I tell you about the woman who brought her hula hoop to the concert in the park on Saturday? Do I tell you it was the biggest hoop I have ever seen? Or perhaps I should mention she was wearing white mom pants which harkened back to the 70's, which is, I think the last time someone actually brought a hula hoop out in public. She was tall and lean, and could really move. Like on a pole kind of moving. But, isn't a hula hoop a kids toy? I'm confused.

Somewhere else in that sea of humanity, there was a little boy and a little girl, about three years old each. They were dancing together, and it looked like little adults courting. Where did they learn to dance like that? Pocahontas?

I waited for our small town's rock-n-roll loving, amateur public access video maker to do his customary high kick, but I waited in vain.

The next day, I went to hear a community band on the square with some friends. After the concert, we had a round of cocktails and caught up on life. The cocktails and the cold sent us to indecision bench, where we sat for an hour watching the tourists go by. You basically have not lived until you see a big old truck with an Australian Shepherd hanging mostly out of it, wearing pink goggles and a bandanna tied around her neck like a little old, how shall I say this without causing offense? Little old lady. Someone in my group may have pee'd her pants. I can't say for sure.

My kingdom for a camera.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

a month

I can't believe I have not had a single thought in a month. Oh, well, that's not true. I've had so many thoughts, I just don't want to share them. They're mine.
Summer is on the way. I love summer. I took a break from the office this afternoon, and just pointed my face toward the sun. I guess that explains why I can't get enough moisturiser on my skin. The sun gives me strength and energy. I'm eating peaches and strawberries and even though the kids on What Not to Wear on the Discovery Channel told me not to wear short skirts after 35, I'm doing it anyway. I've taken up jogging, just so if they did point their camera on me their horror would not be justified. I figure, it's more area for the vitamin D to sink in.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Doctor Zhivago

I just saw the movie Doctor Zhivago for the first time. I was pretty young the first time it came out, if I was even born. Oh my gosh. Hand me the tissue.
I cannot believe what people have endured over the years, and I sit at home in my cozy slippers and watch the world go by. So many things are on my heart right now: Darfur, Iraq, the many senseless murders all over the world. The other day I cried as I read about each person lost in the tragic Virginia Tech shooting. All the while I kept thinking: every day, that many people are murdered in the Middle East, Africa and basically all over the world. Who will read the names of those people and cry for them?
There's a scene in one of my favorite books, The Secret Life of Bees. One of the characters is so sensitive, she reached a point she could no longer function in the world. Her sister had an idea that whenever something was too much for her, she should write it on a piece of paper and tuck it in a rock wall in their yard. There was something so hauntingly beautiful in that. There are so many things I would write on slips of paper and tuck in the rocks.
The term compassion fatigue has been bandied about lately. I'm not so sure how I feel about that. I have a feeling it sure beats grieving fatigue, or running for your life fatigue. I think I am compelled to appreciate what I have and where I am. Of course I want more. So much more. So I balance between this place of gratitude and a sense of urgency.
I'm on the precipice of a relationship, and observing the precariousness of life makes me want to scream to him "It's now, tomorrow may never come."
It is always now.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

What's for dinner?

It's funny, after I made a comment about my dining room table serving as an office more than a place to entertain, I had the pleasure of dinner companions 2 out of the next 3 nights. I had to push away my still humming laptop, and stack a few books and papers. The first guest was a friend of mine of the male persuasion who had come over to fix a faucet. It was comedy to try and prepare dinner with him sprawled under my sink and no water. When he finished, he lounged on the couch, and I buzzed in the kitchen, kind of scattered. I looked over to see he'd dozed off. He woke with a certain male instinct when everything was ready, and I brought a plate of food to him. He looked at me wide-eyed and asked "can we sit at the table?"
The table. And had I not just lamented the unused table a blog back?
I feel like an unused table. There are things I am made for, but it seems other things have filled the void, and I have to push them aside hastily when my true purpose comes into being.
I like to entertain. I like to prepare meals and linger over the dinner table in conversation. I was so caught off guard by my friend's last minute decision to come over and eat together, that the scores of candles I have for just such an occasion languished in a drawer. The Parmesan cheese I have to top off pasta stayed hidden in the back of my refrigerator, though my hurried pasta sauce was in need of that one more thing.
Seems as if I'm going to have to do some evaluating and rearranging. I'm not sure what that's going to look like, but I want to be ready the next time someone comes to dine.