Sunday, February 18, 2018

when is a cold the flu?


you have a cold - it's the kind where you're achy in your shoulders, your ears are ringing, you're coughing up small balls of phlegm from a very sore throat and though your nose isn't stuffed up,  every breath you take is too cold on your sore throat. and it does no favors for your general mood. and by you, i naturally mean me. on top of it, there's another mass shooting at a school, and another bunch of horribleness flares up on facebook among the gun-toting set. i hate being confronted with the wilful ignorance of people i grew up with. the world is becoming so polarized, i honestly fear for all of us. and there's no sense engaging with the deplorables, no amount of logic or reason will seep through their thick, redneck, racist skulls. they sent out their useless, ineffectual, insincere thoughts and prayers and next week, there will probably be another shooting and nothing will be done about it. especially if the perpetrator is white. hands will be wrung and more white supremacist mental cases will buy assault weapons. and that orange jackass in the white house will pose for photos with his grimace and a thumbs up and then rush off to his tee time. and if your head is all stuffed up and your ears are ringing, you might feel rather hopeless about it all.

and it will be compounded by other things which facebook brings to you...like awful, sad stories of a horribly sick little girl who is also being slathered with hopes and prayers - everyone apparently conveniently forgetting that a god that would turn a fever into pneumonia and cardiac arrest in a little girl, doesn't seem all that merciful or inclined to perform miracles. but on that front, you can kind of forgive the thoughts and prayers, because they probably at least bring comfort to those involved. you just mostly wish that facebook didn't involve you in these things.

and you wish this stupid cold or flu or whatever it is would run its course and loosen its grip. hmm...maybe a few thoughts and prayers sent my way would help...

* * *

knausgaard's journey to understand russia.
beautiful.
makes me want to dig out my turgenev.

* * *

and it turns out john b. maclemore of s*town fame made some music.
it involves ambient and field recordings mixed with tor lundvall's work.

* * *

do you know jonathan pie?
you should.

* * *

the food you take you with you when you immigrate.

* * *

i like these short, short stories.

* * *

need more podcasts?
there are some new ones on this list.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

the view from sunday night


a luxuriously lazy weekend - sleeping in, leisurely tidying up, sorting and throwing out a bunch of old papers (what a relief that was!), hanging with the cats, and husband, watching netflix (altered carbon = meh due to odd casting, dirty money = too distressing, comedians in cars getting coffee = just what i needed), baking bread, making spelt "risotto," because it's what i had in the cupboard, roasting a chicken, getting all the laundry done, catching up my 365 tumblr, planning husband's birthday dinner, photographing the first snowdrops - in the snow, no less, making and keeping a vow not to get dressed all day, cutting out and painting pages of an old book, reading a frivolous and unserious novel. it was, in other words, exactly the weekend i needed.


we are so pressured these days to make sure every moment has meaning, but sometimes, what you need is to slow down, stay in your pajamas, read a rather trashy novel (carl hiaasen's skinny dip, in this case), light some candles, drink coffee with extra cream, snuggle with a cat and damn any guilt feelings over any of it. down time like this is as important as all of the things we chase and the hours we work to make and do things that are important to us and/or our jobs. and i would do well to remember that. 


maybe allowing yourself a shouldless day* is the best way to take care of you and give yourself the mental space for the rest that life offers. and by you, i mean me. but i do also mean you. 

* * * 

collect all the books.
it's good for you.

* * *

the case for reading bad.

* * *

some cities are just better for revolutions.

* * *

magazines - collected.

* * *

lovely, lovely audio stories (in danish) by julie thing.

* * *

what you leave behind when you immigrate.

* * *

*shouldless day - from the episode of death, sex & money with ellen burstyn. 


Saturday, January 27, 2018

triggered


just when you think you're completely healed and over your year in lego, something happens that opens up the baggage and you're right back, smack in the middle of how terrible it felt. it turns out that feeling rejected and like i don't belong triggers that awful feeling in me again.  yesterday, i posted one of these ducky swim ring photos in the toy photographers group on g+ as a contribution to their inspiring hashtag - #nofigurefriday. i posted it and then left to go pick up the child. when i got back, i refreshed the toy photographers page to see if anyone had commented and to see what others were posting.


weirdly, my post was nowhere to be found on the page. i refreshed again and scrolled down and down, thinking perhaps g+ stacks the posts strangely by column. there were other new posts there that had come after mine, but no sign of mine. my heart actually began to pound and i could hear the blood in my ears and i flushed in embarrassment - had my post been deleted because it wasn't good enough? did i put it in the wrong category? i had selected "photo challenge" because of the hashtag, but what if that was wrong? were they really that strict? had i been too silent for too long, so i was no longer welcome to contribute? what was going on?


notice in all of those thoughts, i immediately felt that i must have been inferior and deserved to have my photo deleted. it didn't make me angry, it made me very sad and it made me feel like i didn't belong. i posted a comment, asking what happened to my original post and people jumped in, giving me helpful advice about how to share in the group, as if i were tech-challenged. that didn't help me feel any better.

later, i got a report that it was some kind of issue with g+ and that a lot of posts weren't showing. but that somehow didn't make me feel better either. i still feel wary and hurt and have a nagging feeling that i don't really belong in that "community." i wonder if it will fade with time, or if my lego wounds are so deep, they'll never really scar over.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

the view from sunday night


foggy and snowy - it made for a grey landscape, but it was still and quite beautiful, and at least it makes it seem less dark, even if it is still a bit dreary. i took a solitary walk down to the lake with the camera, following deer tracks in the snow. there's a regular deer highway down there. what is it about a walk that settles the soul?


three swans and a bunch of ducks? geese? they were a bit far away for me to see, even with the zoom, and i'm not a birdwatcher anyway. there's but a thin layer of ice on the lake, no skating this year, but just that open spot they're hanging out in. i wouldn't walk out to it tho', that's for sure.


as i crunched through the snowy landscape, i thought about how nice it was that i didn't take my phone with me. so for a few minutes, i could escape from the latest antics of the cheeto in chief. i could have a small break from the constant humiliations he rains down on us...i very sincerely often feel embarrassed when i read the latest news...deportations of lawful greencard holders, absurd claims, baldfaced lies. there's just. so. much. and my overwhelming feeling genuinely is embarrassment. it's embarrassing to think that people in the land of my birth are indisputably that stupid. they knew he was a sexist, lying, cheating, racist son of a bitch with the attention span of a gnat and they elected him anyway. it's humiliating.


but, for a few minutes out there in the hush of the foggy, snowy, still morning. i could just breathe in and let go.

* * *

fire and fury - a postmodern book for a postmodern presidency.
and to think i once loved postmodernism.

* * *

podcast pioneer (or rather) storyteller extraordinaire joe frank has died.
i only recently heard some of his stuff on home of the brave.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

a small, not very coherent, collection of thoughts


i know this is a very serene picture, but i'm not feeling all that serene, there are a lot of things bugging me and they are all tumbling in my head. i'll get the trivial out of the way first...what the hell is a groom's cake? what groom wants a cake? (i need to be where facebook is not...so much for the new "re-focused on what's important" timeline, zuck.) and believe me, the cheeto satan does not weigh a mere 239 pounds. what a shithole. or is it asshole? or is it shitty asshole? yes. yes. and yes.

and now on to the less trivial...several times of late, i have read heartfelt, earnest facebook versions of life stories featuring the storyteller patting themselves on the back for never having accepted any kind of help...be it food stamps or financial assistance of other sorts. as if that's something to be congratulated for. as if needing and receiving help is a horrible, awful thing. honestly, is that where we are? if so, that just utterly sucks.

* * *

when you're crabby from being hungry, it's called hangry, but what's it called when you're crabby from not sleeping well?

* * *

if someone says your podcast trailer sounds "so npr" and also "so american," is that an insult or a compliment? i suspect it was an insult, but i'm choosing to take it as a compliment.

* * *

reading studs terkel's seminal work - working - from the 70s. and i'm realizing we haven't really progressed all that much. it's fascinating and deep and comforting and also disturbing. i have a library copy, but i think i'll have to buy it. so i can write and underline in it - things like this: "i think most of us are looking for a calling, not a job. most of us, like the assembly line worker, have jobs that are too small for our spirit. jobs are not big enough for people."

that said, i genuinely do love my job. but i fear that's the exception, not the rule.

* * *

a friend went to a course with tom of holland
and i want to too!
i have a whole stack of things that need mending.

Monday, January 08, 2018

procrastinating


as i often do with a deadline looming, i find myself procrastinating - making detailed lists, skimming a few chapters of "podcasts for dummies," updating the trello boards (yes, they are really just more lists), going through scads of photos to choose which ones should be sent for retouching (not a priority), writing this...doing things, but not the things i should be doing as i'm careening towards that deadline. doing things only tangentially related to the task at hand. doing things to prepare for doing the task at hand but not actually doing the task itself. why do i do this? why do i need to feel the sharp blade of the axe whispering against my skin in order to get to it? alas, it's not there yet, and so the procrastination continues...

* * *

oh to be a poet of procrastination.

* * *

i've been thinking that america looked like an empire in decline for some time now.
apparently i'm not alone.

* * *

perhaps a reason to start running?

* * *

i jumped on the fire & fury bandwagon and ordered the book.
maybe i shouldn't have.