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It's Labor Day; I made sure to wear my white linen yesterday to beat the chic woman's deadline : no white after Labor Day.
But 'they' say things have changed, and I can only sit back and watch the parade, having been gone for so long: white shoes, patent leather, whatever we (Americans) want to wear and whenever is just fine, tres democratic.
Labor Day used to beckon-in the beginning of school -- the first Wednesday after Labor Day, but now Everybody starts school in mid- or at the very latest late August.
I knew it -- summer is getting shorter!
It's harvest-time -- a feast of vegetables and fruits and flowers and friendships, endeavors committed to and coming through, thank God there's a season for everything.
How much is due to the season? up to the sower? down to the timing?
And still I wonder why the reaping must include the bitter with the sweet, the failed with the fruitful, although all my life I have sung the Thanksgiving hymn words "wheat and tares together sown".
We reap what we sow, in spite of ourselves and because of ourselves, until that becomes the choice we would make for ourselves anyhow.
"Self-care" is a neo-Americanism for what I was brought up to regard as evidence of lack of intellectual substance, unnecessary and therefore suspect.
Although friends' mothers went to the weekly beauty parlor to have their hair and nails attended to and, of course, to enjoy a place away from home of women and gossip and magazines.
It wasn't until I spent several years in Turkey where women regard time and money well-spent in the pursuit of grooming that I came to regard it as a necessary pleasure, mitigated by the pain of waxing-plucking-threading and so-on.
The results speak for ourselves.
Claws fangs lashing tongues slashing words -- whatever happened to sisterhood?
Sarah Palin and her family are being belittled, ripped to shreds even by ladies who pride themselves on being open-minded, who exalt in world peace and praise and living on a higher level. Ladies who are old enough to have witnessed their own children and grandchildren making decisions with unwonted/unwanted consequences are acting as though their sh-t doesn't smell.
Would they behave like this if the Palins were Democrat? or from, say, Massachusetts? or persons of color or otherly gendered?
It's 8th grade mean girls all over again.
In the middle of a culture war again? I just left Ankara and its continuing saga of the pious small-town folk vs. the secular-elite.
And here I am with our media taking sides in the Palin campaign: secular-elites vs pious small-town folk. Aggravated by the never-ending mommy wars over who gets to have babies, stay home, go to work, insist on abortion.
My favorite photo moment in all of this? John McCain greeting Bristol Palin and her boyfriend Levi. What a gentlemanly, right thing to do.
Clearly this military man can understand and handle the causes and consequences of war.
I love my American supermarket Swiss cheese. The flavor is strong-bland enough, the texture chews the way I like it, it's convenient in blocks or sliced and goes well with plain M&Ms and Diet Coke.
Now, my fancy brother-in-law mocks my philistine taste, being a Euro-snob he insists on only the creme-de-la-creme on his TV tray -- and who could blame him? After all, when I cut into a wedge of Jarlsberg I feel oh so connected to ... the totally blue-collar food market in inner harbor Baltimore where I was first introduced to it by my ex-con boyfriend.
Should I or shouldn't I?
What would my mother, mother-in-law, my sisters-in-law, my new AAUW colleagues, my University associates, my daughter, my oh-so-Dem fem-zenBoulder neighbors say?
(I really want to join the Facebook "Fans of Sarah Palin VP" group. That woman has shaken up our presidential conventioneering like nobody else since Oprah declared for Obama -- who won't even touch having Sarah P. on her show 'until the election is over'.)
And if Oprah won't risk it, who am I to brave feminist opinion?
But just maybe if I join some of that gutsy pixie-dust will rub off on me.
is a word I love to feel -- self-righteous, virtuous, having done the right thing -- way to go!
Of course what goes with all the self-referential bennies is the knowledge -- the
-- that I've given a poke in the eye to someone who's not only feeling but
smug, and therein lies the gilding of the lily.
In this day and age, when we are encouraged to start with our feelings as a base for an intellectual understanding, then I just know that
on the right/eous road.
How else ya gonna vote?
Ramazanin davulu -- the Ramazan drum which awakens the pious to prayer during the month of fasting in Turkey.
At 3 o'clock in the morning! I love it because I'm an early riser and so feel justified in my pretty much unshared habit. And because -- although I'm neither Turkish nor Muslim but an American with an anthropologist's bent -- I honor Turkey's remaining traditions.
But many of my Turkish friends disagree with me! Modern life is such that different families observe the holiday differently, and so an alarm clock becomes the more private keeper of a family's adherence to tradition.
In the pink! it's so
. What else would a girl dabble in anyway?
... beautiful, breezy, beguiling, becoming, bewitching. My grandmother had a mirrored tray of stoppered flagons on her vanity to remind her of ... conquests, past loves, girlish selves,
moments? We too can arouse our selves-dormant to the Now by a simple dab, spray, waft on pulse-point. Personae old and new can be (re)assumed by simply stepping into one's cloud of fragrance.
Which brings us to the question: Where on that mirrored tray will I find the right note to my future lives, selves ...
-- I see a dark-bright teal blue.
Dark enough, of course, for the miserable emotion such negativity should give me, bright of course because what an elating, inflating sensation! Imagine, something bad happening to someone you wouldn't wish otherwise upon and without having to play God, what serendipity.
Is it my German coming through, some enduring kink of DNA that dances in the nasty-zone of unmercy? Yes, the Germans have a word for it, but is it only the Germans who feel this way, who must own it because after all they've named it?
What color is your
and it's all about me --
56 pre-birthday wishes:
a dozen age spots;
My Boulder Bus System;
five Healing through Writing Workshop essays;
the first TEFL Lesson;
a facial with Aisha;
a shamanic session about romance and sex;
"Notes from the West" for the Turkish American Association Newsletter;
to the Boulder Valley School District to teach Public Speaking/Continuing Education;
a great pair of pointy-toed black flats, super blue jeans, FAB white shirt;
a maker's dozen of cookies with colored sprinkles on top!
It's a man's world, and I love it!
I just came back from the paint counter at Guiry's, where I cried on the paint guy's shoulder about the two gallons of dreadful color paint I had chosen for my living room and could he please fix it?
What a guy! he took time to do his best to help me, all concern and no charge. Meanwhile, I was surrounded by alotta guys with guy voices, guy clothes, guy questions going about their guy business, what a world.
I'll get the paint back under my fingernails and go back for more.
Can't a woman be truly liberated if she does her own laundry? her own hand-laundry? her own house-cleaning? her own house-painting? prune her own roses?
Oh God, never mind her own child-care! (I will always be grateful that mine were babies in the age of disposable diapers and juice boxes.)
Painting the house is such a chore BUT if guys do it and consider it within the normal range of guys' work, then ... why would a woman not feel good about picking up that brush and setting-to?
So what's the brouhaha about Sarah Palin's being able to handle a gun?
Glamour and history were my mine this morning as I drove back home from the Airport. My course was set due west toward the full moon going down behind the snow-capped Rockies, magnificent.
It was photo-op perfect, trite perhaps for those who have lived here for a while, but nonetheless stirring for all that. To be aware of living in a calendar page wild west landscape still astonishes little ol' east coast me.
To know and to feel that America exists in huge spaces and great history is to be proud, awed, and responsible for doing our best by her.
Bare boobs on the balcony! could have read the neighborhood headlines where we used to live in Sofia.
It wasn't my first brush with the importance of the balcony to apartment living; after all, we'd lived in Ankara where the balcony is central for laundry-drying, tea-sipping.
But in Bulgaria I discovered that a balcony was simply an extension of the inside, and that when a woman needed to pluck her bra off the clothes-drying rack, she simply covered up with one forearm whilst stepping outside to retrieve the garment and survey the passing scene.
Very sensible, copycat me now says.
Wild oats -- a dream of my youth keeping my cockles warm these prim and proper days.
Post-divorce, I was just my daughter's age now when I left the comforts of Philadelphia's Main Line and moved to northeast Philly for my new job, and then was transferred to Bawlmer, both very very different places from any I had known.
And the guys, too, so different: struggling artists, ex-cons gone straight, cheating friends of cheating friends, casual acquaintances. (This was in the pre-AIDS/herpes days.)
Would I recommend such a gavotte to you? Of course! For our daughters? Of course not!
Little Black Dress
It was when I caught him eyeing me from across the room that I realized I was looking good.
Granted I had been running 5K every morning, doing my exercises and eating right, and my indulging in some heavy flirtation had brought that certain something to my glance and glow to my complexion. But I had to admit it was my little black dress that set me off to perfection.
Just what is it about this glam garment? Simple lines, sophisticated color, revealing of flesh yet leaving something to the imagination ...
Easy! It's the perfect lifestyle template.
Back Seat Girl
The first time didn't count, I was naive beyond the point of believability -- the best definition of naivete, anyway -- and it was only heavy petting in the front seat.
But that really first time in the back seat -- wowee! lust combined with I Really Shouldn't Be Doing This plus How Far Should I Go Anyway and then Oh Yes I Can't Believe I Didn't Do This Sooner was every bit as memorable as it should have been.
Yup, steamy windows, head banging against the door handle, wild dogs barking ...
Definitely one for my ages.
In the Zeitgeist Sandbox
I am definitely being shunned in zenBoulder for my politics. My perceived politics, really.
All I asked was: Ladies, ladies, why are you so angry? (vicious, really) to all these women who are delighting in rending ripping wrenching apart ...
Sarah P., the now lightning rod for 'are you one of us'. Us being the right (left, really), the intelligent, the educated, the knowing, the caring, the higher-brow, the smarter voters.
Hunh. What am I to make of sister-citizens in the most educated place on Earth who refuse to be asked a question?
Ladies, ladies, it's politics.
Bus Stop Haiku
On this September Morning's "Bound"
Chris Cooper is my
driver today: surprise me!
I'm always in love.
Nerves Shredded, innards
shattered, my life's imploded.
I'm weeping, bleeding.
Probable lives, what's
next? which do I choose? How'll
I know? I'm not there yet.
Tire jouncing about my
middle, chain around my neck -- how do I steer this thing?
Wasps flock to my wrists
lightly fragranced with Jovan
Musk -- maybe they're males?
my daughter, my first born.
Do we part ways here?
Dear Shaman, How do
I find my lust for love, desire,
Signs and Symbols
He sat at the bus stop holding a bunch of balloons.
When he got on the bus, the bus driver asked: Are you 29? and he in seriousness replied: no, I'm still perking along, I'm 50. I just had my birthday breakfast of steak and eggs and apple pie
with vanilla ice cream!
"Eureka!" I cried to myself: beautiful balloons and favorite foods, I gotta get cracking on
My Birthday List of Birthday Gifts to Me!
What are the signs and symbols of turning 57?
Let me re-state that: What would I say are the Signs and Symbols of Becoming 57?
for a Perfect Birthday
A bunch of brightly colored
a heap of
large and small
a bar of
a packet of fun
by a western- regional author
a bottle of Korbel brut California
starring Ray Winstone
at "The Kitchen"
a pair of
from "Gypsy Jewel"
message from Johnny
card made by Ceci
an expensive tube of
for my Mr. Coffee machine
a green, woodsy
for a more Perfect Birthday
to weigh 127 pounds
to have finished the Healing through Writing Workshop
to have done one TEFL lesson
to be jumping rope at least two different ways at least twice a week
to be running on the treadmill 30 minutes at a stretch at least twice a week
to be adding a sketch to my daily 100 Words at least once a week
to have written an interesting resume and intriguing c.v.
to have started a 'news from Boulder' column for the TAA Newsletter
lots more heart-grabbing books to read
to win some Lottery money with Sera
for a most Perfect Birthday
on top of pre-birthday, perfect birthday and more perfect birthday wish-lists
through May 31, 2009
in love and lust
, elegant, lithe
alongside my writing
the house all
my business infrastructure
to Istanbul, Hawaii
living room furniture
living room wall hung with
happy working in a
interesting paid positions
in best order
aches and pains mitigated, gone
projects completed, disposed of
wanted, truly wearable
for the next year decided upon
She's on the Run/Front Seat/1
She put up her hand to slap him, he caught her wrist and shook his head, pressing her arm down by her side, and said: Turn.
It was awkward in the front seat but she managed as gracefully as she could and balanced naked on all fours, he unbuckled his belt and pulling down his pants freed his erection already standing out of the unzipped pants.
She hoped she was wet enough for his rough first thrusts, willing herself to be open to him and juicy besides.
With his finger he found her in
the dark, and breathing her name he entered her fully, hard.
She was surprised at his even, pumping strokes, expecting that he would know that a woman, she, would be better seduced by the dance rhythm of heart and pulse, lost caught kept and held.
He waited until she came, and then in three even measures he ejaculated at the deepest inside her.
When had she last felt such a violence of eruption, spasm? For all she knew that he watched pornography and lay with prostitutes, he must have been so hungry for her, ravenous for
She's on the Run/#2
She's on the Run/Front Seat #3
what he could have with ... her.
After an interval he withdrew, still hard, careful not to drip yet his stuff was so far inside her that not even she would know how much he gave until much later.
You're tight like a young girl, he said, I really mean it... and I should know.
She smiled a slow, private, triumphant smile.
She's on the Run/So Cold
He stopped the car outside a small market, the brightly lit signs beckoning beer and snacks in the darkening twilight, got out and went in, coming back
She's on the Run/So Cold/#2
with cigarettes, cold bottles of beer and soda water.
She enjoyed this small break in their descent from the traffic-busy boulevard to "their place" down below the rim of high hills. It gave her a chance to compose herself after the fear of being seen stepping into his car, to look forward to the shiver of what might come next.
He lit a cigarette, opened the bottle of beer, and started the car down the winding two-lane road to the low area of farms and barns and fenced-in compounds. Slipping a pop CD into
She's on the Run/So Cold/3
the player and unzipping his jeans displayed his erection to her, huge.
It excited her, the way he grabbed her hair, twisting it around his hand at the back of her head and forcing her down upon him before she had a chance to wet her lips for a smoother glide.
Tugging with her hair he moved her head up and down as he wished to be taken, jamming himself against the back of her throat.
She gagged, trusting he would enjoy that other enveloping sensation, and again, and then came up for air.
The Tip Jar