Archive for March, 2012

Last night I got a text around ten about roses and redness and violets and how one of those pretty little roses was left out on my front stoop for me to find. The number was one that I didn’t recognize, and I thought it was some kind of a silly hoax, or maybe something that would lead me to a page to sign up for some kind of sweepstakes that required my social security number and banking info. But, curiosity got me, so I cracked open the front door and peeked out. There, on my front step was a pretty little red rose, nestled in a Blue Moon beer bottle. I peeked around, searching for signs of big men and mean spirits hiding in the darkness, then snatched the bottle up and brought it inside, locking all of the doors behind me. All last night and into the this morning I’ve been pondering my mystery gifter. The label of the beer bottle is in pristine condition, the corners unpeeled and unsmudged by dirty fingers, it’s not even bubbled where clinging perspiration would have distorted the peel. This person was a fast and thorough drinker. They keep their hands clean. The rose itself is pretty and simple and a bright red that calls attention to itself in nature. I love it. It made me smile and made me think of kindness and serial killers, because it seems like the two seem to co-exist in this world, and that a single flawless rose left on the front stoop is the sign of both.

In the same line, this weekend I was met with some of the most beautiful kindness. The babe’s daddy lost his oldest sister to a two year long battle with cancer. The past couple of weeks babe’s daddy has been distant and cold, almost to the point of meanness, and in those moments I grew to resent him. I resented the fact that he wouldn’t talk when I was near, that when the babe smiled and played he smiled back and then looked away and got lost somewhere that I had been before. I didn’t take into account all of the things that existed in his silence, or I did and didn’t want to admit it. I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to share with him the words that he needed and that all of it would be just too close to what I’ve been through. But, when the time came the babe’s daddy was sad and kind, like with the release of his sister he had released all of the anger and pain at the situation. We were able to talk about what it meant to let someone go, what it meant to love them even if they weren’t there to love in the way we have learned how. How to love in a different way. We walked along the lake together, with the babe and with a cousin in tow, and picked boysenberries off the tree to stuff into our mouths. We enjoyed the too early tartness of the fruit and handed babe the biggest and juiciest from the highest branches to enjoy, while we fed the ducks and searched for gators that hid in the muck. We hugged for a long time. In him and in his family I experienced a kind of beauty and kindness in watching them grieve, in being there, and in smiling with them. Their honesty and their faith in her existence in Heaven was genuine and wonderful, and it turned an occasion that is difficult into something more, something like a celebration, the way that it should be.




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I had three days of production. The babe and I tilled up our little garden in the back and put on our gloves and pulled up the weeds. We then took some seeds that we bought at the dollar store (4 for a dollar! We got green beans, carrots, pumpkins and spinach), and sewed ’em in along with our yummy stinky compost. That goopy black mix smells heavily of decomposition and usually has a fly or two or ten buzzing around it, but the plants sprout up inside of it and drink it all in. Today we squatted down close to the soil and caught our first glimpses of little newborn sprouts. I didn’t put the markers in the plants this time. It was actually because I forgot and was too lazy to go out and do it later, but we’ll say that it was because I look forward to the surprise of my bounty.

Other than the garden, I spent Saturday at the Winter Park festival for the arts. It was Mama, the babe, my wonderful beautiful friend Jessie, and my marvelous insightful friend Philip. I’ve been to the art festival for the past three years in a row, and other than the times before that when sister and I would meander out there to spot our artwork in the high school tents, this was by far the best show I’ve ever been to. It wasn’t the art, and the crowds were thick and full of people with opinions and thoughts and lives that had nothing to do with me or mine, but the company I kept was cheerful, and full of ideas that intermingled and bounced off of each other. That, and the babe was old enough this year to like the artwork. The high school tents were his favorite and he napped in the sunshine while we strolled down the walk.

Yesterday we went and spent the whole day at Disney. THE. WHOLE. DAY. The babe was both overwhelmed and in love. Much like myself.

And so, today is spent vegging out. I’ve sat in front of the the television, I washed the dog, I smelled my two days worth of trotting around in the Florida sun and decided that at some point a shower was in order, and I’ve eaten two gluten free oatmeal raisin cookies slathered with real butter. Sometimes we just have to take a breath, ya know?

No progress on the book. Maybe soon I’ll pick it up. It’s been waiting for me.

How has the weekend been spent for you?


Hahaha. Intense space Invasion.


On the Ferry Over!

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Alright alright, I’ll admit it, I haven’t been around these parts in quite some time. I have no excuses. I graduated in December and since then I’ve enjoyed the wide open world of semi-unemployment. Not that I’ve been doing nothing, I do work off and on when my employer calls me in to listen to and edit stories of his youth. Most of them involve some form of extreme alcohol consumption and beautiful women. Almost the entire time I spend “working”, my boss is telling me his stories, and as he tells them his eyes get even more crinkled around the edges and the corners of his mouth curl up, the residue of coffee still thick in the creases. It makes me smile. We have slowly and steadily been putting together his stories to try to make something like a book, or a life history, or just a time to sit and remember what it felt like to be young.

I’m starting to feel nervous that I’m not going to have those stories. These days I feel like I spend most of my time trying to think of interesting and fun things to do with the little mister babe, but actually watching cartoons and walking slowly around the pool and browsing the internet for pointless websites. I’m not sure if I have put my life on standstill, or if I have suddenly felt this urge to do more and be more and accomplish accomplish accomplish, when before I was content with simple existence. I think the year of twenty five has instilled some kind of ever-present anxiety inside of me that ticks and ticks and ticks, insisting that I’m never going to get any of it done. As a result, I never get any of it done.

Case in point: I’m writing a book. I know exactly who the characters are, where they go, their histories and the beginning, middle, and end, but I’m stuck at page 35. I just can’t force myself on. Maybe I need to, or maybe that’s the point, maybe I need to let it just happen.

Maybe I need to stop with the forcing, and just let go a little bit. Let go and hang out with the babe. Maybe it’s okay if every day is not spent going on fantastic adventures where we discover hidden places, maybe it’s better to just hold on here and be happy drawing pictures together, or playing hide and go seek, or doing the laundry or moping the floors or playing with clay. I guess I just need to tell myself that that stuff is okay, and instead of becoming exhausted thinking of what we’re not doing, to just do, and to just have fun.

In other news, my entire household has come down with the stomach flu, that is, except for me and my cuzin who are hoping we have ridden out the storm. I know my sweet babe has felt terrible, but it’s almost a comforting feeling to have my little fire-cracker curl up beside me to have me rub his tummy. After a week, I think we’re about ready to head out and remember life again.

Who else has some ways to encourage one to get up and go? I could sure use them.


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