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A rusty wheelbarrow full of yellow-red pomegranates sits on the cracked sidewalk; beside it, a scruffy farmer tipped back in his chair, waiting to sell his fruit by the kilo to evening passersby. Not the stuff of dreams to Turkish villagers in harvest-time. But an astonishing sight to this American who pays in gold for three perfect globes for her coffee table display each Thanksgiving. Yet that same farmer, nor his wife, couldn't, wouldn't dream of placing such ordinary items in a decorative category. To marvel, surely -- how shall we agree that these are a dream, or the everyday?
It's like living in a postcard: the Flatiron Mountains a middle distance scrim complete with sunny meadows and misty hills; the far backdrop the still snow-topped Continental Divide; and the foreground a stage-set for my quotidian round to Safeway, Rite-Aid, the dry cleaners, the bus stop. (Anomaly Alert --this towne is bisected by the equivalent of the N.J. Turnpike -- Route 36 rammed through residential areas, commercial strips and the University of Colorado campus, from Denver through to the Rocky Mountain National Park.) What keeps this glossy scenario from being merely 2-dimensional? that which is not said, but done, behind.
Curtains drawn against the summer heat, the living room is cooler than the sun-bright balcony just outside the glass wall. I'm on my after-noon bed, soothed by fresh sheets, drowsing through 'The New Yorker'. It reminds me of ... visiting Nana during summer vacations: going upstairs through the dimmed house to take an after-lunch rest in her bedroom, the only room in the house to have an air conditioner, she in her double bed and me on the couch beside. The machine whirred colder in the bedside window, and I admired the cabbage roses on her wallpaper as I drifted off...
Raven calls up the morning. Brother directs the traffic, Sis comments on the neighbors, Mom's at the kaffeeklatsch, Dad's surveying the parking lots. Who are they? Great, sleek, black-feathered beasts -- hatched out of the towne's naive sprawl? or an Old Clan come to witness the unwitting demise of an ancient foe? Perched in the tree-top across my street, squatting on the lights above the N.J. Turnpike aka Rte. 36, clustered in the copse by the creek next door, pecking at indescribable bits stuck to the asphalt up the length of 28th Street -- Old Bones chivvying history's Next Chapters.
Ready? a sip of wildness came down from the dawn mountains today; a tickle to the nose, an exhilaration to the blood, a tap-tap-tapping on the memories of early Augusts past. Funny, isn't it? that merely mid-summer brings with it different clouds that herald the inevitable end of season. The plaid of school days is again on pencil boxes, but no longer of the smocked dresses of my elementary school years. I want my seasons pure! No dwindling of delights to 'bridge' to next phases. Fall has its own crisp pleasures, and dare not begrudge these days of melting heats.
To K, C2, O and N.
With this Spell I bind you to the Honesty Principle:
THAT - you pay your debt NOW and in full to C;
THAT - until you do you will remember your debt and feel guilty, greedy, mean and selfish, and be subject to equal mistreatment and betrayal by those you consider your friends;
THAT - should you somehow not be able to pay your debt to C that you will pay that amount to someone else C would consider deserving and owed.
"Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful." Udana-Varga 5:18
I refuse to answer her questions, Melissa.
Who does she think she is?
How dare she attack the family this way!
If your sister has any questions she should take them to your father; Walt is her true father, as he is for all nine of you.
That's not right to bring this up, after all I've done.
How could they accuse me like this? They're warped.
I won't stand for any more of this, it's not normal.
You think you're so smart, standing there.
First it was my mother, then Walt, and now it's you.
Three minarets sentinel, mosque domes rosy in the dawn, rising up over ... Kansas?
Look again! Those are smokestacks from the powerplant next to Ceci's car fixit place down Arapahoe Road;
and those domes are but billowing cumulus clouds taking their place with the help of the morning breeze.
Frankly, not even the birds in Boulder get up as early as the muezzins who call the pious to prayer at sun-up in Ankara.
Memory and desire in my new neighborhood seem to intersect at moments of homesickness.
Where is home, then?
An American is always at the frontier.
Here we are.
It was just me and my echinaceas sitting at the bus stop;
moi in my chic new sun glasses and
them fresh out of the nursery in their cut down brown paper bag, looking out at the passing traffic.
And the passing traffic staring back at us,
a spectacle of the budding friendship of a woman and her nature sharing a Thursday morning moment.
Who knew we would have so much in common?
Elegant in classic purple and art shades,
cool as cucumbers in the wilting heat: we thrive in tough conditions
and come up the next spring -- smiling.
Provence sur la Front Range, that's my balcony.
My lavender plants from Whole Foods Boulder are tres chic in
their Anthropologie a la 29th Street Mall white ceramic pots.
And I in my VLH at the scrubbed wooden table, nibbling crudites
dipped in Martha Rose Shulmans' aoili -- the penultimate coup de grace.
The ne plus ultras? the hot pink hula hoop hooked over the tool closet door knob and the promotional white frisbie emblazoned with "The Peloton" in gold Louis Quatorze font leaning against the a/c vent.
Je ne sais pourquois I am taking lessons in Conversational German.
"it's not reality -- it's actuality!"
This slogan is from a TV channel Johnny and I have been watching: I loved seeing Ethan, who was mean to our Uma, get roughed up by Denzel in 'Training Day'; in 'Damages', sure, Glenn is sooo nasty, but how cruel was it to contrast her too tight face-lift with
lovely Ellen's young honest visage?!
But what totally grabbed my interest was the short announcing some new law/judge program in the fall, with Malcom-in-the-Middle's mother playing the Judge and Getting her Neck Nibbled by some Slick Young Fella, whoooaaa!
"The end of history": such a seductive statement from grownups who shoulda known better. On top of that baloney we now have "The return of history" from pretty much the same folks who "take wishes as facts" when it comes to our foreign policy.
Who wouldn't grab the gift to stop their clock at that certain achievement, perfect age, happy moment, political success? In short, to play God -- to write their own history.
But hubris cascades into unintended consequences: how will we reap what Russia has sown?
Surely the Ghosts of History Past are saying Bah! Humbug!
Confession: Boohoo -- I just flooded 3 of the 5 washing machines downstairs.
How? by putting in small bathroom rugs that not only sudsed-up too much with the detergent I used but also refused to wring dry properly during the spin cycle. And I wasn't even able to rectify this problem because the machines are strictly 'insert 5 quarters/machine goes until the program runs itself out', which means that I couldn't get to the spin/drain portion of the cycle without adding all the water from a newly started program. More tears.
Life Lesson: Between 'start' and 'stop' can be watery surprises.
Can there ever be such a thing as Too Much Love?
If systolic pressure is that when the heart is contracting, and diastolic pressure is that between heart beats, and a ratio of the two within limits is an indicator of a healthy heart,what is a girl to do about falling crazy in love?
When the thrill of the chase sends the pulse soaring, and the terror of the capture plunges the nerves into a shocked, biding frisson -- that's the dangerous algebra of an EKG on the axes of love and life.
Will it ever include the price?
Oooooh ... "İndiscreet Charms" is blared across the top of "T Magazine" today, which set me to thinking about my recent out-of-character indiscreet charm -- the habit of going decollete in broad daylight.
My womanly attributes have always been modest, and my upbringing was straight-laced. Whether on the NYC subway or in the streets of Turkey it has been the more sensible course to show less skin.
Now with my daughter as fashion adviser I've not only gone blonde but also out in much-admired low-necklined dresses and tops.
At last! to be in fashion and an indiscreet member of the booboisie.
My favorite guilty pleasure? Enjoying the tabloids. Today it's the "National Enquirer" having its time in the sun with the John Edwards story.
But remember back when the "Star" revealed Dick Morris sharing his Clinton phone conversations with a prostitute and gained (a fleeting) legitimacy among the (more) respectable rags? I started buying the "Star" and happened to take it with me to meet a friend. She was so embarrassed to be seen with anyone even holding the "Star", including me.
I was taken aback and told her: "I went tuh kollitch", I can read anything I damn well like.
10 Must-Haves for your carry-on when traveling:
1. pretty pillowcases: for refreshing sleep
2. good coffee and coffee-making paraphernalia, including an appealing mug: for a perfect start to the day
3. your cell phone: to be in touch at any time, any place
4. a book to read: so you're never bored
5. nice hand and shower soaps: to feel beautifully clean
6. a Journal to write your "morning pages": to stay in touch with yourself
7. a map of the area: to know where you are and where you're going
8. your favorite fragrance: to feel like yourself
9. a chic tote bag: just in case ...
10. --for you --
Would you like your parking lots "Keith Haring" or "Basquiat"?
Even eco-Boulderites are confronted with this stark choice when parking their Priuses. Take the lots at the 29th Street Mall: the car-space lines are fat, clean and white, the arrows sure, the slips sacred to "handicap" - "expectant parents" - "alternative fuel" - striking in their internationally understandable graphics.
Pure Keith Haring's "Radiant Baby".
On the other hand, the lot up at Rite-Aid will remind 80s-era New Yorkers of their youth in that city: rotting asphalt, stuff stuck to the pavement, broken glass, parking lines if you're lucky.
C. took pictures of us when J. was here. The pix came out the way they usually do -- some were perfect to send family.
The others of me, though, were straight-up my father's mother's Irish mug; the mirror had never told me I had Nana's lips and mouth.
It was the early '50s when I would watch Nana put on her make-up: the lipstick carefully outlined on top which then smeared the lower red; a dab of color on either cheek and then rubbed to a pretty blush.
I can't have G. jam his cock down Nana's throat!
T-shirts! Peace Alliance!
Red Rocks embraced Jack Johnson last night – that sacred space welcomed Hawai’i’s Sacred son-singer-songwriter and resonated with music fit for the Nature Gods of the Front Range.
Truth be told, I was surprised that Barack Obama didn’t step out onto the stage; surely he is the smarter older bro to the funner younger brother. And where was sincere Al Gore? Every body in that amphitheatre was primed to genuflect to the man who has unmoored men for the sake of the unmovable mountains.
This was a professional, thoughtful performance for a happy, groovin’ audience.
Three birds sat on my railing this morning; it was great to see them back. They'd skipped town, or at least my balcony, during the hottest days of the summer in July.
They're little guys, a nondescript brown but with rosy throats. Their chirp is true and strong, and territorial in its insistent message proclaimed in all directions.
Including mine, and living single as I do I am dee-lighted to have their outspoken male attention in my life. They join my jealous flirt of a betta fighting fish, and Cone, my stalwart, stable protector.
A girl's gotta have it.
Cone, my man, you're the one. Solid, stalwart, striking in your strength, purely phallic in all readiness.
We met at the place where female shapes can always find a male part to fit them. Yes, for me you were the right size, you had the shape to suit, I bought your whole package.
I love your bold, neon look of sure confidence, your utter belonging to me. Loyal, direct, assertive though silent, you're all mine.
You stand guard at my self-construction, you safeguard my private space.
You're my all weather mate -- firm when wet, erect in heat, never cold.
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nofault thinktank knitting
intelligence extrovert tannic
youknowit tundra almondscoveredinchocolate echinacea aroma-patchouli ideal
ally/c------k Konacoffee efficacious stunning
excellence eagerness stoic coneflower Raisinets sib Bryn Mawr ruralBelarus SirCone erectBluRay
yearly-heat TEFL lithe
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Dead-heading my geraniums this morning took me right back to my after-school job working for Mrs. Thompson. Mrs. T was a part-owner of the Garden City Bookshop and full-time good citizen of our small town.
The lessons I learned from her I remember still. To this day I can't walk by a piece of litter without picking it up and throwing it away.
Every summer she would plant scarlet geraniums in the Bookshop planters. And every morning she would carefully pinch off blossoms past their prime.
She explained: for new growth to bloom the finished blossoms must first be removed.
The only place in Boulder I've found disposable fountain pens is in the University of Colorado bookstore. And I don't get over there unless I'm working at the nearby Museum.
Lately I've had to make do with substitutes: ballpoint pens are basically unbeautiful, and fine point Sharpies are fun but their drag across the paper isn't the kind I want.
So for the first time I used gel pens: they come in colors I want to use and have a nice feel as the tip meets paper at the speed I write.
Happy dilemma: I like both gel and fountain.
What would I put in my Time Capsule? Whatever I chose would appear at best quaint, at worst -- too easily shrugged off.
Given the crazy pace of cultural obsoletism, how long would you bury a time capsule? 5 years, 25? Didn't it used to be 100?
Aaah, the good old days. Now I'd say that in 5 years my favorite clothes, my electronic stuff would seem ridiculous, no one would have to wait 25-50-100 years to giggle and turn aside.
What do I think would endure the test of time? My personal favorites, of course: Oil of Olay, Kelloggs, Chanel, Saab, Toblerone ...
Monsters in the bedroom?
Only twice do I remember waking out of sleep, to fear my bed crawling with ladybugs, to know the picture hook as a hornet.
What did frighten me forever was a line drawing in a fairytale book of one sooty, long-fingernailed demon pulling the nose of another imp.
And for the length of my childhood I couldn't bear to see that picture -- I was careful to open the book NOT to that page to read the other stories, to look at the other pictures.
Where is that monstrous feeling now -- to lurk, to pounce?
Sparkly sandals, where did girls ever get the idea?
Gemstones, jewel-colors, glittery beads and shiny straps and buckles all laced together across the insteps of our feet. (Thank you Nordstrom's, Lord and Taylor, Payless, Aldo's ...)
Mothers babies sisters girl-friends teens oldsters stepping out in fancy formation, tripping the light fantastic over asphalt, gravel, cement, dirt paths, cobblestone streets, indoors and out.
Our lucky males, to walk alongside such lithe lovelies, tenderfooted treasures. From top to toe we flash pretty desires, winking seductions. Dancing together we create new fun steps, leaping for joy.
Who can resist the lures of flirty feet?
I didn't used to like Raisin Bran, the way I didn't like nuts in my chocolate bars. I didn't like fruit in my ice cream, nor raisins in my oatmeal cookies. And at some point I agreed to drink coffee, but only with sugar and cream.
But now -- I love my milk chocolate studded with fruits and nuts, the bing cherry ice cream at Dolans I consider a delight. I drink my coffee with hot milk in the mornings and black the rest of the day.
I'm a grownup at last.
(Oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips are still better.)
Remember when you were a kid and could spin and whirl and twirl and get dizzy and fall down and get up and do it again all afternoon and feel like it was play?
Those days were the days, for these days I am dizzy racketing around the time zones: son is 4 hours west of me, best friend 1 hour west, other best friend 1 hour east, families 2 hours east, life coach 7 hours east, husband 9 hours east;
And don't ask about watching the clock to hit the US/Euro/Turkish newspapers when they come out each morning.
Thank God for the internet?
My husband came home and my live-in boyfriend is sulking: he refuses to eat, his gorgeous blue mohawk is crestfallen, his gaze is wistful, watery.
But he knew I was married, that I have loyalties that must be heeded; after all, my husband not only pays my bills but pays his room and board, too.
Married life is the bread and butter of a proper position in society; yet how can a spouse ever compare with a lover? Just read "Anna Karenina", "Madame Bovary", the tale of King David, even.
Don't fret, Blu-Ray, my betta boy, He's leaving on Tuesday.
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