Monday, October 31, 2011

displaced

Yesterday morning I tried to write a letter to Mississippi in the form of a blog post. I tried to tell her how much I loved her, what I loved about her and then I tried to reason with her. Yes, I personified my state in the form of a woman. A head and heart strong woman who brings an extreme amount of care and loyalty to those residing in her home. It has been said by many a Mississippi mother, I will kill for my children. It is our dark side, a murderous nature born of our loins. We do not apologize for this and we understand this is not a pro life stance.


Back to the letter.


It sucked. My letter was too emotional. I was too connected to the stories of people I knew, a girlfriend who was raped while taking her normal early morning jog in college, children I worked with in both state and private psychiatric facilities and a nephew who could one day benefit from today's embryonic stem cell research. The letter felt too personal. I felt ashamed to even have to write it to a woman I knew and loved, a woman who taught me what being a mother meant.

Then the issue came to my child's attention so I knew I had to say something about choice and where we decide to focus our efforts. He and I will both be voting on November 8th.

Dear Mississippi,

Don't make me write to you about this.

Please don't make me remind you of this.

Don't displace your efforts. Help the living, breathing children you have in your home right now.

Please vote NO on Statewide Initiative Measure No. 26 or at the very least bring your foster and/or adopted children with you to the polls if you plan on voting yes.

Love,
Grateful me







Saturday, October 29, 2011

enemy

She carries a sign. On it in black magic marker is written We're kind of a BIG deal. The word big is highlighted in pink and I watch from my office window as she poses for photographs. Yesterday I sat on a park bench eating my lunch and watching as the crowd of people grew and the chatter became louder when she plopped down beside me. She turned to me, smiled and said Hi so I did the same. Then I watched her as she unlaced her sneakers and removed them to reveal small feet with black painted toenails. She placed the shoes on the bench beside her, stretched back looking into the sky and sighing before she seemingly said to it rather than me, It's such a beautiful day.

Yes, I said. It is.

Again she turned to look at me as if she had forgotten I was just there. I wondered for a moment if she was stoned then decided I didn't care. She reached into a pocket and pulled out a pack of cigarettes, Whatcha got there? She pointed at the sandwich in my lap and lit the cigarette.

Egg and olive, I said, my wife's specialty.

She grinned, Nice.

Would you like this half? I offered.

How lovely of you to share, but I'm okay. She made it for you.

I nodded and we heard someone shouting to the left, Alexis!

Over here, she yelled back and a large man with a long curly beard began walking our way.

Gotta go, she said as she picked up her shoes and looked back at me one last time, Nice to meet you.


You as well, I said.

Today I keep returning to the window to watch the crowd grow in Zuccotti Park. Now and again I catch a glimpse of her. It is one of those moments when I am searching that Ned walks into the office and finds me staring at the crowd. Keeping an eye on the enemy? He laughs.

Yeah, I guess so, I say.




Dear Reader,

It's Saturday and I am just playing with a story inspired from photographs taken by Matthew Septimus, found via Dooce.

May you have whatever you need in this world,
Grateful Me, AKA Not Your Enemy

Friday, October 28, 2011

something

I got nothing.


Nada. Zero. Zip. Zilch.



Nothin', I tell ya'.



But I may know someone who has something. Well, I don't know them personally. It's just that if you wanted to know someone with something you may want to know of this person because, like I said, this person, they have something unlike me who tonight has nothing.


Me. Nothing.


Tom Waits. Something.





I got gratitude. Surely that counts for something so maybe I do have something.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

fog

The evening is marked with not so much a cry for help but a notification of an event or series of such. Something out of the ordinary maybe but then again maybe not. I don't know what to do with such news because there is nothing to do. I make a call and a mention only to realize this thing, this whatever it is, must be allowed to be. It cannot not be. It was is and will without me. Me adds or takes away nothing. I slip then sleep into fatalism.


Everything will be okay. The people you love, they will be fine.



I awake at night to a monologue. There was that time he interested me. Where did that go? The interest limiting the view like a thick morning fog lifted then gone. A beautiful day can make us forget until we need to remember how transitory it all is, when change is as welcome as a new season.


Better than fine. There is nothing you can do.



The morning is late as have been the last two. The anxiety decreases in direct proportion to time becoming less relevant. I make a call and we laugh. This, I think, I will miss but then remember how the fog lifts and smile at the thought I didn't even see a fog this morning. A cup of coffee and a long leisurely walk later I fulfill my obligations not out of duty but definition. I am defining myself.


Simply save yourself and see what happens.



It is Lebowski's birthday and we have lunch on a patio. There is a strong wind blowing the sun cool. We toast and talk about risk and courage and she thinks we are different but I say we are not. I don't know if I'll be okay, she says but I tell her she'll be exactly what she wants to be. I will miss you, she says. I will still be, I say but then wonder what.


What happens when the fog lifts.







Gratitude.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

easy

One of the reasons I so love this connection with such a seemingly infinite space is I can read this and thanks to Seth I can find out about this guy and how easy it is to help him. Crazy easy to not only help him but potentially save his or someone else's life.

One free test.

Why wouldn't we do it? 

You and me, we would.





Sometimes gratitude is an understatement.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

doubt

Do you ever think your parents mainstreamed you and told everyone to tell you that you were really, really smart?

Yeah. Me too.





Now it seems I go from uh oh, what the hell have I done, am I insane, who put me in charge of my life and was that some kinda joke and are those people over there pointing and laughing at me and damn, this is not safe all the way to

I
can't
wait
for
this
next
chapter
in
my
life.



In small bold caps I remind myself, IT'S UP TO YOU, GENIUS.



Gratitude as I develop a twitch.

Monday, October 24, 2011

done

Colby's Last Game 2011

That sweet baby gave it all he had.

instinct

The thing about announcing your departure is that once you do it you're already gone. There are the logistics with which to concern yourself like how do you live with such an amputation. It seems to be one of those consistent truths of life that you don't know what you have until it's gone. Although you try to think of everything something always seems to creep in and romanticize a better day when we had this and there was that.

I say don't be fooled. Trust what your gut tells you.


Rested gratitude as I count down and remember I am still there. Three more Mondays.




Music?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

better

The morning is a fade into grey. Peace is most marked after such a violent war. I look out the window and feel comfort in defeat. At least now I can see the potential a day may bring. Yesterday I heard tales of what could have been a beautiful day, saw light peeking in around long white blinds then buried my head deep into pillows and blankets. Mental notes of my last will and testament, whoever comes and cleans the house before Mom gets here can have everything.

On a scale of one to ten dehydration I say I reached eight and the few sips of Sprite I got down yesterday tasted like joy, little lemon lime bubbles of ecstasy. Not too much, I knew. My body had my attention. Any wrong move was met with severe and immediate disciplinary action. There were times I didn't even know what I had done, from what misdeed the punishment had come.

Had my body not read the Geneva Conventions, especially the bit about any form of indecent assault?

No, it had not. My body does not recognize international law.

Today I am better. Better than I was before the war. Not because I am stronger but because I have a new appreciation of a peace always afforded me but maybe at times taken for granted.


Gratitude on a Sunday morning with music and writing and making peace with my body.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Thursday, October 20, 2011

what I'm saying is

If you're driving down the road one day and you're listening to the radio because that one Black  Keys album has been playing for three months and you feel it necessary it to venture into some new music and you wonder what's popular these days and all of a sudden they play some oldie and it's this then yeah, you and me, we can sit on a patio and have a couple of drinks as a day dies down and a night lights up and we talk and laugh and love where we are.

Because maybe you understand that before there was House there was Hal.

float

This is an experiment in water. A novice learning to stay afloat. For some it becomes a physics problem, for others it is only a matter of truth. For all involved it appears relative. Volume, air pressure, flow, velocity, can you control the monkey mind.

My Dad was a fish, the first person I had ever seen do the butterfly. It was a startling Olympic event performed behind a camper on a reservoir in Mississippi. We kids would spend the entire day soaked, performing water ballet, seeing how long we could hold our breath, skiing, swimming to the outer edge of parental consent then being called back. It had to be one of those days blending into each other that I turned and watched as the large man who I knew as my Dad burst out of the smooth water, arms outstretched, eyes barely open, mouth exacting a precise inhale. The water came as a thin sheet down his face. Then down he was and up again. The motions repeated over and over until he transitioned seamlessly into a graceful swim. For him, I am now almost certain it was a morning exercise routine. For me then, it was magic.

Still today over thirty years later I can still almost touch what that felt like, the first time I witnessed what appeared to be magic. Now I smile when I think about how this little site has water in it's name and it seems fitting that the creek it references is where he taught me to swim. Here, as was there, I am learning to float first.

Relax.

Let go.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Maybe one day I'll do the butterfly. Maybe not. We'll see.

For now I am grateful for the opportunity to float.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

responsibility

Como Courtyard


What I am thinking and doing day by day is resistlessly shaping my future, a future in which there is no expiation except through my own better conduct. No one can live my life for me. If I am wise I shall begin today to build my own truer and better world from within. ~ H.W. Dresser

plans

What are your plans? He asks.

To be nocturnal, I say.

He laughs.

I don't.

Seriously?

Seriously. I want to be a opossum when I grow up.

Nice, he says.

I know.

Then what?

I will work on my house and get it sold.

In this housing market?

Yes.

Then what?

I don't know. Do I have to plan everything?

Most people like security and that comes with a certain amount of planning.

Yeah. Okay. I get it.

So you have other plans?

No.

No secrets?

No. Can you be okay with that?

Well, I guess. It's your life.

Yes.




I am so very grateful for my family and friends.




Dear Reader,

I went back to the old format for blogging because it is nice and simple, a good representation of what is happening in my life currently. That topped with a good friend saying she was having a hard time seeing the photographs and leaving a comment with the new way.

Here we are in black and white.

Have I said thank you lately?

Thank you, my sweet and curious reader. I can't imagine quitting you.
Shea


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

quit

This is where we start to end.

The next twenty-eight days will be spent in preparation of a final exit. What I do now should show not only how much I care for friends but for a stranger as well. The place I leave will be better than it was when I found it. It will be clean, the filing will finally be done. All those notes in my head, when he needs this, the way she expects that, will be written down and then typed into a program. Nobody should have to learn all that the hard way.

I will not love saying goodbye to people I have come to love so I will treat this time as the sweetest hello to someone I have not yet met.

May I open this door for you,
It is a great start to the day if you could already have the coffee brewing when she walks in the building. Whenever she says the world is going to end tell her it is just the beginning.

A wink,
He likes to argue and his smile will light up the room for everyone so play along. There is no power struggle. It is just pretend. Do for him and he will do for you.

And a smile,
He is the key. Treat him well, understand his value and listen. He will tell you what you need to know.



I quit my day job in a world where people rarely quit anymore for good reason since there are not as many jobs as there used to be. Soon I'll be off to create one of those rare job thingies.


With gratitude of course.




Post Script for you, my friend.
When I told the one guy who I've been telling his whole life, Do what you love, my son, that I quit he said, This should be interesting. My response went something like, Well, hell yeah, it's gonna be interesting. When has life not been interesting?

Monday, October 17, 2011

simple

I missed you while you were gone and I don't know where you went and it doesn't matter anymore. Things are simpler now. It may have been that they got too complicated. Things. You know. It all seemed like a really great title to a book with no plot to follow.




I read Thoreau at the laundromat while a small elderly man sits next to me. I can feel the weight of his stare and my mind wanders until I remember I am reading Thoreau. A child pushes a cart around the room and his Mom yells. He stops and looks at me so I smile. He begins pushing again, slower this time due to the warning but all of us know he will speed up as if he can't help himself.




I walk outside to sit in the sun and feel the wind. Did I ever love Autumn this much? I don't remember and it doesn't matter anymore because now it is Autumn and I am clearly in love. I am too distracted by all that this is to read and part of me realizes it was Thoreau's hope that I would be too distracted by the beauty I saw to read the notes on what he saw.



I have taken no pictures this weekend. There is no visual documentation of where we were. These hieroglyphics carved into the surface of my cave are all we will ever see. For me it is sufficient.


It's been a while since we have heard some music around here, huh?






Gratitude.



Saturday, October 15, 2011

morning after

I call him and tell him. He doesn't believe me so I say it again. He requests proof so I send it. He receives it while we are on the phone. Have you told her? he asks.

No, I say and momentarily sink into the notion of doing so. I'll call her later.



I call him and tell him. He doesn't believe me so I say it again. And again. And again until he has no choice but to know it is now true. What will you do? What are your plans? he asks.

I'll do what needs to be done, I say, but today I did this and I wanted to let you know.

I remember how he once said my life could serve as a warning to others but I refused to take him as a prophet.

We'll see what happens, he says.




I call him and tell him. He believes me. Of his two beginnings I am supposed to be the reasonable one. This should be interesting, he says.

There ya' go, I say. Interesting. We'll be okay and it will be interesting.





She answers the phone sounding better than I've heard her in weeks and the guilt makes my mind stutter. I ask about everyone, How is he? How is she? How are they?

Everyone is fine. The ducks are in a row, the toys in their place for one slight moment before I tell her. This is the call I did not want to make and as soon as I say it I am confronted with all the reasons why.

Don't worry, I say.

I can't, she says and begins to talk about why she would.

It's okay, I say, I can handle this.

I know, she says but her voice is changed and I feel the shame of being the one who changed it. If I could live for anyone it would be her and my life would say do not fear.

When we say goodbye I know the fear is a logical response and when I wake up the morning after it will be at least part of what drives me.




If I say, It's gonna be okay, Mom, that has to be the truest thing I have ever said.

If I say, It's gonna be better than you could have ever imagined, that would be my hope.


I have gratitude for what will be.


It's okay, Billy Sue. Everything will be just fine.






Thursday, October 13, 2011

critical thinking

Here comes the requisite shame from spreading frustration and anger, a monster feeding itself. I am angry so I spout some tirade which makes me feel shame which then turns again into anger and oh, don't we just love drawing circles .


You would think a girl raised in a church would grasp the concept of forgiveness and stop drawing circles. I am trying. Don't say it, Yoda, this is fragile territory.



Last Saturday I took a ride with a friend. We were going nowhere so we stopped everywhere. We both took pictures. I brought these here for you and me so we can remember what that afternoon felt like.


History

Look

Hey Debi, do you think it's open?

Let's see.

Why yes, it is.

Color

Warning

Climbing Fences


I do fall. I trip and fall on my face constantly. Just know, please, I am not only grateful for the obvious beauty surrounding me but also for these precious lessons I am learning.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

night before last and first world problems

There are days and ways it becomes too personal. The loss of a customer, the mood of a coworker, the latest confusion in a series of confusions when attempting to explain the confusion is more confusing. Maybe I should sweep the floor. I think I'm responsible for that as well.

Gratitude, right? Don't be some whiny person with a job in this economy. You could be tarring roofs in August or worse yet you could have no means of taking care of yourself or your son. Turn up the music, push down the anger and take it on the chin. Then say thank you 'cause you're lucky. You could be out on the streets wondering how you're ever going to feed him. You're either ninety-nine percent or one percent? How self fulfilling can prophecies be? Suck it up.

Steve Jobs said if you wake up enough mornings in a row and think this is not what I would want to be doing on the last day of my life then you need to change something but he was Steve Jobs. I am not.

This is my thirty-five mile commute home when I argue the pros and cons of being the hamster on this particular wheel. Sometimes I try to focus on the music, others I don't even realize it quit playing. Always I tell myself no matter where you go you will follow yourself there. Take responsibility. You are the problem. Get over yourself. Stop taking it so seriously and there's so much more but you've heard them all.


So there is your backstory to Monday when I came home and buried my head in a pillow and prayed for sleep. Two hours later I got up and made dinner for a sweet, smiling son out on fall break. We ate, talked, laughed and I tried to write something. It soon became evident the writing wasn't coming easy and I had had enough hard for the day so I walked into the living room for my date.


Dear World, 


I am dating a fictional character and that is one of the best things going on in my life right now. Yes, he is crippled and angry and I obviously love him. Go ahead and judge me. I'm really okay with that.


Sincerely,
Someone who knows some things are better as fiction

I'm okay with your judgement but I'm not okay with baseball because when I walked into the living room to start playing the recorded one episode a fucking week of the one man (yeah, fictional, okay) who still makes me feel like a hot blooded woman it seemed that baseball had gone too long. Yes, the slowest sport was even slower. Go figure. I looked at the clock, saw there were five minutes left till the hour when House was supposed to be playing but some other stupid show was because of stupid, crappy, sorry but I hate baseball and I am not a fan of apple pie but I am still American so, once again, go figure.

Rage is confusing.

Breathe.

So I started screaming and stuttering at the same time, Slater! It's House! Baseball! All the while I'm pressing a red record  button on the remote over and over and my brain is screaming NO and I thought this is it. I can no longer deal with life. Slater ran into the room, saw me standing in front of the television desperately attempting to save my one little fantasy, took the remote from my hand, pressed a button and told me everything was going to be okay.

Dear Department of Human Services,


You can't take him away. He's nineteen and chooses to stay because sometimes I feed him. So there.


Regards,
His Mom

I settled into the couch feeling all silly but happiness overrode it. I snuggled up into a blanket, sipped a Shiner Bock beer and Billy Sue laid her head on my feet. Yay, great ending huh?

No.

No, there was no ending.

Nine minutes before the ending of House the recorder stopped and the current programming, which was the local news, began playing. I was not going to find out what happened to the lung, the cancer patient, House and Wilson's relationship, his new one woman staff who I loved or anything.

Dear Life,


I claim defeat. You got me. Congratulations. I can only hope to dream of the apocalypse now.


Thanks,
You know who I am

There were no tears on the outside but I was clearly crying within when I walked into Slater's room and explained in the most pitiful way how my fictional dream man had been taken away and I was going to bed without writing or anything and there were not enough Shiner Bock beers in the refrigerator to take away such pain.

Pout.

When I awoke at 1am to write because I cannot not write what I found on my computer was a series of Notepad messages which went exactly like this...


Alright. Please read each document completely before reading the next one. Love you and have fun. 
Just minimize after you read and the next document will appear. 
It's computer magic. Don't question it.
Hopefully this will be the boost you need for an excellent day.
P.S. There is a surprise at the end.


I minimized.


So I was just walking around outside with Billy Sue and this guy showed up and he was really annoying. He kept talking about this big elephant in the room about him being in prison. Very strange man. He said he was very sorry you didn't get to see the end of this great part of his life on TV and that you deserved your own personal viewing. So guess what????

I minimized again.


He gave me the link to your own personal viewing of the episode.




GUESS WHO I AM TALKING ABOUT?




Again.

Gregory House...


What?


I know!!!! 
On the next page is the explanation of how this works. So read carefully. 



Careful. He knows what a tech idiot I am so I have to read carefully. Focus.


Since your loving son knows how much you love House he has found you the entire episode online.I went ahead and played it through until this point. Do not try to fast forward or rewind as that completely restarts the video. 
Love you and have a great day. And no. You will never be able to find this video again after you close the window so enjoy it while you have it. Sorry, the video quality kinda sucks but it was the best I could do. If I am asleep then sorry if it didn't work but don't wake me.
Just remember, no fast forward or rewind. You can only click play or pause. You are awesome and I know this isn't much but hopefully it shows a little of the appreciation you deserve.




Dear Reader,
I don't deserve Slater and I can't imagine being more grateful for the sweet mercy that is him.
Love,
me

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Kiva

Arkabutla Lake, MS



You know you've heard how rather than give a man a fish you should teach him how to fish. Kiva found people who know how to fish. They just want help buying the fishing pole. 




I am grateful we have found ways to invest in each other.

Monday, October 10, 2011

two percent




Slater comes home excited, Mom, have I told you about the ninety-eight percent?

No, babe. I don't believe I've heard this one. Let's walk outside and you tell me. It is a beautiful day with a slight wind and a beaming sun. Billy Sue runs around his feet so happy to have him home.

I heard this guy on the radio, Adam Riess. He's an astrophysicist who just won the Nobel Prize. He and two other guys discovered that the universe is expanding at an exponential rate because of this stuff they call dark energy. We can't see it but it makes up seventy-three percent of the universe. And then there's this stuff called dark matter that makes up about twenty-five percent and all that's left is two percent. All we perceive is two percent! Isn't that amazing? There is ninety-eight percent out there we know nothing about, he is pacing with a huge grin plastered across his face.

Wow, that is amazing. Billy Sue is now sitting next to me and we are watching him. Her head follows him back and forth, and I find his excitement contagious. Rather than feeling stretched by some invisible force or lost in a dark of unknown I am connected in this two percent. In this very limited awareness I realize how in love with him I am at this age. He will be twenty next month and his mind is ripe with new information and he seems to be on the cusp of the next discovery and it feels as if it is some remarkable adventure.

But then again it has always been that way with him.


I am so very grateful for this two percent.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

cheeks made for pinching



I think he was scared I was going to ask for one of his chips.

Or maybe he sensed I did just want to hug him and pinch his cheeks.

We both settled for a photograph.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

time of year

this is when she started changing



I am grateful for this Mississippi weather.

care

When did you stop caring?


Yesterday at 2:14pm.


Oh. Serious. I'm being serious.


Maybe the question presents itself as being less serious than what your tone implies.


Just answer the question.


I did.


You stopped caring yesterday at 2:14pm?


Yes.


Why?


Because that is when your questions became absurd to me.


What?


Your questions are absurd.


That's mean.


I don't care.


Nice.


Listen, it's not that I don't care at all. It's just that I care about different things now. It's okay. We can care about different things now.


What do you care about?


This conversation ending. Life happening. Giving and receiving love. Learning. Family. Friendships. Beautiful days. Laughter. Are we really talking about this?


Well, it just looked like you stopped caring.


Hm. Well, thank you for caring about that. I guess.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Tank





Shhhhhhh. 


Don't tell Billy Sue.


Tank and I, we had a good day.






Gratitude.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

where I lurk

It is not easy being the focus of a family intervention where hard truths are spoken by the ones you love the most and who, in turn, care enough to say what needs to be said. We were enjoying a nice beach vacation a couple of years ago when Josh so kindly turned to me and said, Shea, you talk about Dan Auerbach like a Jehovah's Witness talks about Jesus.

Point taken. Keep the crazy love on the down low. Understand everyone has their right to a personal choice of music. It's just that, well, if you listened to him, if maybe you started with this album and then listened to that album and go back to that other album and then the other one and oh good gosh, can I just sit in your living room and talk about how Dan Auerbach came to save your soul?

No?

Okay. But he did.

And then there were these other people, all carrying some sweet message, kind enough to share their lives...

writing a note to make you laugh,

taking a photograph which makes you smile,

inspiring you as if he was your own personal Vince Lombardi and every morning was Super Bowl Sunday,

showing up as a comfortable friend who never disappoints,

astounding you with one paragraph which said everything that ever needed to be said.


And who could forget this guy?


Then today the love grew. It widened when I found this lady and I read what she wrote and I knew instantly that I loved her. The writing, it is stellar.



Okay, I'll leave now. I can see you're getting ready for bed. Could I come back tomorrow, maybe bring some more brochures on my personal brand of salvation? No? You'll have to think about it? No? Maybe you'll change your mind by then. I'll come knocking about the same time tomorrow.


Just know that I am grateful for your time tonight.


And so grateful for those artists who keep coming back and doing the work.



R.I.P. Steve Jobs

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

human

I hear tell of a cousin in the second or third who owns three homes all of which are for rent, two on the beach and one in the mountains of Colorado. He is a single man who lives out of a backpack. At any moment a renter can call and he can be out of his current space and have it "rent ready" within two hours.

Here in what feels like way too much space I consider my backpack. Right now it has four stories from four different writers in it, a couple of books and that's it. It hangs on a door knob waiting for a moment. At times I look at it and think, let's go.

I see hitchhikers and want to pick them up because I want to hear their story. I want to hear about when they started walking. I want to know where they are going and what they plan to do when they get there. Or, better yet it seems, if they just stopped having plans.

Then I wonder if that cousin of mine in his ability to move quickly has ever yearned to get comfortable enough to stay. Maybe, I don't know, but maybe it'd be good just to get comfortable in the knowledge we all have some type of yearning. It's just another one of those things that makes us human.

Or not.

Maybe we can just listen to Janis now. Seems appropriate.




This is when Daddy says, Ya' know, Boog, she did trade all her tomorrows.



Tonight I am grateful for the knowledge that being grateful doesn't mean you can't want for less or more.

means to an end

Accessorize



Even in the most trying of times the weight of big hoop earrings can distract. The feel of a leather boot as it reaches up a calf to a knee cradles a leg as it steps in a line for bread. Glossy burgundy lips make the oh in oh no, I forgot, nicer it seems. Bracelets can dangle, clink before resting as you lay a hand across a desk. Two coats of mascara are required for such special moments when the batting of eyelashes provide punctuation for questions of need. Spray the curl in place, add color to the cheeks. Remember to smile.

Just don't let them look you in the eyes.









Dear Reader,


Where the hell did that come from? Hmm. I have some ideas, but I think tonight I'll cuddle up in a blanket on a couch and have a date with this guy. Oh my beating heart, a new season.


Much love,
Grateful Me

Monday, October 3, 2011

Occum's Razor




Direction



I tell myself to keep it simple. Don't complicate matters with stories in your head. Very simply this photograph won a mention of the honorable type in the Backyards of Mississippi Contest and I won $10. Simple, beautiful, fantastic, yay me. At the same time the photograph prompted the art council to urge me to join their group with an annual membership fee of $20 and that's all it takes.

Was I the only nonmember entering the contest? Is this how they get new members into their group? Or wait, do all nonmembers get an honorable mention? How many of those things were given away? She said I was very creative and wrote, I love you work. When people leave out something as simple as the r in your is that some sort of tell to their dishonesty? What kind of occult is this? How desperate are these people to get someone else in their group?

Geeze.

When you are in Texas and you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras. ~ Theodore Woodward

But what if you are from Mississippi and every animal known to man is running in your head, a stampede of thoughts on how you are not good enough?

What I do is send the $10 and become part of a possibly desperate artistic group and surround myself with living, breathing people who love to do what I love to do. We'll see. I'll let you, reader, know if anything weird starts happening. We know it will, don't we?


Simply.

Before the stampede.

And once it clears.

I am most grateful for the mention of the honorable type and the half price membership.



Sunday, October 2, 2011

basement o' Juan



Thank you, Juan and crew.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

autumn

I shuffle through a day,  papers, conversations. There but not. Now is the time of year the air cools our minds and we soon forget how oppressive the heat could be. The sun is no longer our enemy and the moon becomes our lover. It is a welcome change. I don't want to miss it. I pray for a million of these.

At the same time now is when I need to predict, need to write a story of where we will be in the seasons of the future. Data, trends, passing conversations, life as we know it translated into life as we will know it. Numbers weave tales and rumors affect. I think this is supposed to be my strong point, an analytical intuition, the making of the hypothesis.

The leaves will change colors. I will notice the yellows and the reds first. Before long there will be a crunch to our walks. The days will become shorter and I will pull into the driveway in darkness. Warm winter foods, thick socks, cuddled up in blankets we will then claim as our own. We will begin to see our breath and bed, oh sweet dear warm lovely bed, it will be hard to leave you.


Now it feels like a new year where resolutions are made in the faith our past predicts our future and history is here to educate. Unless, of course, we look around us and decide to change with the season.


I am grateful for the choice.


I am grateful for today.