You know when you finally figure out what you want, but it's 3 timezones away and you can't get to it?
Er, I mean like that.
Wouldn't know anything about 3 timezones. Nope.
You know when you finally figure out what you want, but it's 3 timezones away and you can't get to it?
Er, I mean like that.
Wouldn't know anything about 3 timezones. Nope.
It seems the house directly across the street from my 2-room apartment is for sale. Asking price is a whisker under $2 million.
(NB: the house is actually at 7 Concord, but Google Maps is one door off...)
EDIT, 1044: Fixed the links.
I've been doing some thinking lately (="off and on for a number of years") about what is necessary (vs. "sufficient", which is a different concept altogether) to be happy. What i really want to be doing, where, and with whom. Job, housing, friends, music, food (shoot, I sound like Mark Renton)...sure, these are important. And I got 'em. But are they the right kinds to really sink my teeth into and enjoy?
More after the jump, if you dare.
white shirt coffeestain no sleep head cold coughing fit no hot water server crash broken code evangelical politics empty bed sour milk.
I rescued this as they were removing it from the HMV store in Harvard Square a couple years ago. It's sat propped in the corner of my apartment since. The idea was to hang it on my wall, like some sort of trophy. Or I thought maybe it'd look cool over all my CD shelves. It has a sharp, perforated metal backing, so the floor was variously protected by a Boston Globe from 2003, and an extra copy of the SARS disclosure form I had to sign when I flew through Toronto.
(The form was in English, Chinese, and French, naturelment: "Avez-vous de la fièvre? [Oui|Non] Avez-vous un ou plusieurs des symptômes suivants: tous, essouflement OU difficulté à respirer? [Oui|Non]" Do we even care about SARS anymore, or has everyone moved on to avian flu?)
A year or so ago I made one attempt to remove the concrete moly bolts, so I could mount the damn thing on the wall. But at the time I couldn't find the pair of vice grips I thought I had, and was stymied by the final, most-corroded bolt. So back in the corner the sign went for another year or so.
I just threw it out tonight. (The sign, I mean, though the extra SARS form has gotten the heave-ho too.) One of those things that needs to go, and not stay. I mean, it's sort of a cool objet d'art, and it's retro, or something. But that was then (if ever). Now it's just "junk."
Besides, I think I need a new chair.
Whatever else Celexa does or doesn't do to one's neural chemistry and outlook, it sure makes for great (=vivid) dreams.
Now, sleeping till 1530, as I did on Saturday, helps with that too. (The dream thing, I mean.) But I was again reminded of how creative I can be when I'm not actually awake. I increasingly find that the dreams are informed by real-life events or stresses; I know that happens to other people a lot, but not me, unless I'm popping pills. For instance, this past week the lease on my parking space ran out.* So I spent the 2nd half of the week scouring Craig's List looking for parking. I found a space close by, and went through more than a few hoops to see the space, decide to take it, find out it was already taken but be told there was another one available close by, go see that, decide to take it, get certified checks to pay for it, try to arrange to drop off the checks, then be forgotten about, etc. etc.
So what do I dream about last night? Parking. And groceries. And neighbors. And carrying groceries from my parking space to my apartment, and shaking my head in disgust at how everyone was crowding my space with their (lack of) parking skill. And a big Infiniti sedan which was apparently a present to myself to give me something to drive during the winter. And drive I did, around the old neighborhood in Media, PA, (in which, btw, I haven't lived since I was 13) where I hit 90 mph on a two block stretch, and reveled in all the trunk space compared to Veloce, and then the Infiniti sedan turned into a van with room for at least 12, and I was describing how much of a change it was from my Mazda, and saying why I loved all the torque of the big V6 (shared with any number of Nissan/Infiniti cars, like the 350Z and Altima). But then I was visiting my neighbor back in Cambridge to handover my keys (or something) for some reason, and we started making out. And after that there was a four-wheel "bicycle" that I was riding recklessly in Somerville, controlling with handlebar buttons for speed and braking (both of which functions, by the way, were spectacularly thrilling--these thumb-activiated triggers were super-sensitive), but not getting the steering part right, so I basically kept running into walls. I'd go for a test ride on a "bike" I was thinking about buying, and careen down a ramp onto the bottom level of a mall in Somerville, then try to steer but hit the wall. People I (barely) knew were there, having some kind of reunion. And some athletic person who was visiting from another coast was apologizing for not being able to score more cans of Coke for all of us, but she felt like she'd worn out her welcome with the hosts, so those of us who came late (presumably because our four-wheeled "bikes" couldn't be steered) were out of luck (at least as far as Coke was concerned). So we were left to escape the shopping mall by wading across a decorative reflecting pond which had a very narrow path of stones about 4 feet below the surface of the pond. If we couldn't stay on the path, we'd have to swim. Getting to the other side of the ornamental pond meant keeping quiet and not turning on a flashlight (wtf?) because all the people on the other side of the pond were trying to attract "sprites," which were these weirdly shy creatures of the night, and flashlights would scare them away. And then I was waiting in Somerville (yes, again) to meet up with my friends John and Katie because they needed some pictures taken of them after their wedding, but they'd carried all the equipment on the Green Line, and it involved a lot of film projection equipment, like the movies substitute teachers in 9th grade would show, but with the equipment running amok. So there were film reels spinning, and hundreds of feet of film ending up on the floor of my apartment--all critical to the photo shoot, but all equally uncontrollable.
So, parking was on the brains. Along with, apparently, a few other things.
I didn't use to have those sorts of dreams, but. Now I do.
Have you heard Federation X? I've been listening to them a lot lately. They're responsible for the quote at the top of this screen (at least as I type this--I might be changing it soon--mousing over it will tell you whether I have or haven't), and have exactly the right kind of rocking misanthropy, and kind of sound that only a trio with two four-string guitars and a fucking INTENSELY SAVAGE drummer can produce. Metal for the soul. Like the Dirty Three but with less (=zero) violin and still all those intangibles that make music so great.
It either fits or it doesn't.
*Which is more or less ok. I was starting to become frustrated with the lack of skill of my parking neighbors, and though the space was super-close to my apartment (and relatively inexpensive as these things go), I was getting close to needing to write a "Dear Neighbor" letter to people so that I actually had room to fit into my space. So maybe it was just time to move on.
Sometime last weekend, I got an anonymous note in my mailbox from my neighbors (no, not that one) asking me to "be a bit more aware" and turn down the music. The note wasn't dated, and it didn't specify the date of time of the offense.
Rightly or not, I've passed from "regretful" to "annoyed." In, like, a heartbeat. So I feel the need to respond. To both light a candle and curse the darkness.
Dear Faceless, Nameless Cowards,
So sorry I disturbed you, whenever it might have been. I'll certainly try to be more considerate.But you should know, at this stage, it doesn't always come easily under certain circumstances.
See, I'd love to keep the music quieter, but I find a little Spoon or Girls Against Boys helps me ignore the tobacco and weed smoke pouring under my door or (in happier, warmer times) through the window. But I'm sure you don't smoke, do you? That dope-ass Tiefschwarz remix of Kinda New and the first Federation X record are really great for blunting the impact of Clydesdale hooves high heels in the hallways. (I mean, shit...name a song that's in 7/8 that rocks harder than Song About The Sweet Lovin' Woman. You can't. There isn't one.) Do you still wear Docksiders without socks? (Hey, I'm just asking. I'm sure someone still does. I bet they're quiet, too.)
Additionally, I've been known to play music while people in the building are extravagantly sobbing or cackling (not at the same time--I don't think). I don't want to begrudge you your emotional turmoil, but I'm sure I don't have to worry about that, since you're not bi-polar, are you?
That you addressed me by my first name means this must really have been eating at you (enough to do some phonebook sleuthing). That you signed your note "Your Neighbors" means I can't figure out whether you're above me or next door or across the hall. Or whether you have a peg-leg, a deaf roommate (or 8) or a drug problem. Clearly you knew that.
But never the matter. For all that, and despite the fact that music is playing in my apartment 95% of the time I'm in it (which means there're a lot of times you don't hear it) I rather like it here, and I'll try even harder not to pierce whatever it is that insulates you from your surroundings. And anyway, you might be pleased to know that my 20-year-old amp has started taking days off now and then, so till I get that replaced I've got these big ol' canister headphones on. If you can hear the music now, there's something wrong with both of us.
Just don't confuse being "more aware" with "giving a shit."
Christopher T. Welbon
Meanwhile, I'll reach into the Way Back: After a train trip to/from NYC for Thanksgiving (the mere whiff of snow in CT on Thanksgiving Day made me prefer to deal with Amtrak instead of slushy traffic without snow tires), I had my first encounter with Zipcar. It's a neat service whereby you rent cars by the hour. The fee includes all insurance and fuel, and the process is (almost) completely automated. You reserve a car near you (or not) on the web. Head to the car at the appointed time, and wave your Zipcard over the sensor and it lets you in. Turn the key and drive off.
Most people, I guess, use Zipcars for grocery shopping or ferrying family or couches around. I signed up a couple weeks ago to be able to haul stuff bigger than loaf of bread. So I rented a Jetta for a couple hours to move my airconditioner, fan and a chair to storage. There're many cars to choose from, though I guess you have to plan well in advance to get a BMW, MINI or Mazda3 on a Sunday afternoon. Everything worked really well, and it feels very much like one of the perfect examples of Web-enabled e-convenience. Or something. I have yet to talk to an actual person; and more to the point, I haven't needed to.
For my birthday, my friend Simone had gotten me a ticket to the Sixers/Celtics game on Weds. So we went to that. It was quite a game, and though the Sixers lost (which royally sucked--but when you let Kendrick Perkins get 19 rebounds, you can't really expect to win), the stars did their thing. I'd never seen Iverson play in person (he was injured the last time I got to a Celtics game and they never seem to be around when I'm in Phila), and if possible, he looks even smaller and faster in person than he does on TV.
By Thursday, my new winter tires and wheels had finally showed up and I had them installed. I'll miss the other ones for the next few months of course, but the ride is now actually quite a bit nicer. And I'll actually be able to get around in the snow. It's actually supposed to start snowing any minute now, so we'll see.
As mentioned previously, I saw North by Northwest for the umpteenth time. And Kubrick's Lolita for the first. What a great fucking (um..) movie. So understated. So fantastically shot. Amazing performances. Etc. Finally saw The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Plenty of great Wes Anderson touches (and a great montage with Devo's "Gut Feeling" as the soundtrack), but not as gigantically good as his others. I will say it was kind of funny seeing Tony Shafrazi mutely playing an Arabian film financier (or whatever).
Central Kitchen is my current favorite restaurant (at least till I go to East Coast again). Aileen and I met up there Thursday night, and the cod-and-bacon fritters were earthshaking. Too bad there were only three of them on the plate; but Aileen let me have two of them, so I guess it's ok...
And since my dad brought some Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale up to NYC from Phila, thatt's been my favorite beer. I only brought a single bottle back with me on the train, but I tracked some down locally later in the week, and have continued to enjoy it throughly. Big, strong IPA flavor; a very reasonable (though completely dissimilar) stopgap till Rogue Chocolate Stout is available again.
I've closed the week with some freelance work today--woot--and am looking forward to a R. Kelly marathon tomorrow. With that in mind, I'll close here and try to get some sleep.
It's nearly impossible for me to describe just how uninterested I am in the upcoming winter solstice, and the newer (in the cosmological sense) religio-cultural celebrations of it that we've come to know as The Holiday Season®.
But given the risk of sounding crabby--it's not at all my intention to begrudge anyone else their joys of the season--and the possibility of some chemical wrinkles, and not really having any nuanced insights about it all anyway, I'll just say
I can't wait for it to be January.
I don't have the faintest notion what to get y'all. (Whoever "y'all" actually are. Ahhh....the joys of the single life....) And you have everything anyway, right? I know I have plenty of stuff for myself (and if you've read this blog before today you know that too), so what if we all just make donations to the ASPCA or help the blind, or rebuild NOLA (or should that be "help the blind rebuild NOLA"?), or cook each other dinner, or shovel somebody's walk, or pick up the phone and say "what's up?" or something?
Huh? Whaddya say?
Almost exactly 10 years ago, I made my first visit to Boston. I think it must have been Super Bowl weekend (so it was actually a little later in January), because I remember watching the Steelers play the Cowboys in my hotel room. (But the Steelers played today, and so that's still kind of a valid point of similarity.)
The weather then was just like the weather now: warm and rainy followed in the space of a couple hours by a quick switch to brutally cold. This is a weather pattern that Boston seems to specialize in. We're close to the water, and can be affected by warm rainmakers from further south, pushing tropical moisture ahead of them. But the cruel joke is that they then pull in Arctic air behind them as they wander away east of Nantucket. Two inches of rain in a 12 hours, and you think it's spring; 12 hours after that, everything is frozen solid, and the wind is whipping sand in your eyes. Which, oddly, doesn't feel quite as bad as the frostbite.
Now, I don't really like hats. They lead to Hat Head, among other things. I know they're good for keeping heat in and keeping ears warm. And I will fight to the death to protect other people's rights to wear them. But I don't wear them often, and I certainly don't travel with them (from North Carolina, in this case) just in case I'm going to need one during a 3 day visit. But, on that trip to Boston in 96, once it stopped raining, I had to buy a hat. HAD to. It was fucking cold, and at the time I was a country boy in the big city, and needed a hat to keep warm. So I went to City Sports and bought a hat. Dark blue, polypropylene fleece skullcap. Not extravagantly warm, but a definite improvement over not having one.
I still have that same hat. I only wear winter hats a couple times a year, but that's typically the one I wear (though I have an extremely wonderful hat that my grandfather picked up for me back then, in Norway, when he'd driven above the Arctic Circle; I sometimes wear that, depending on how "jaunty" I want to be or how little I care about "accesorizing," depending on one's perspective). The point, then, is that it has to be really cold for me to wear a hat. And that weekend, it was.
Just like today. I had to go get something from the car this afternoon, and when I saw how cold it was, I bundled up a bit, and reached for The Hat. I put it on, and off I went. It was cold, alright; in the teens, just like when I'd bought the damn thing in the first place. And windy (ditto). I trundled there and back, and returned, freezing despite the hat.
And amid the biting blasts, I got to thinking about how similar the circumstances are, and yet how different. So much has happened in 10 years, and then so little. This sounds idiotic, because that's what happens: things change AND they stay the same. But if you had told me then that the hat would be one of the things I'd still have 10 years later, I would have told you you were crazy. So, the hat has become more than a hat; it grew quotation marks, became weightier, became a "hat."
I've certainly come to realize there's WAAY more left lying around from that time than just the "hat," some of it welcome, lots of it not. And, of course, I've added to the "hat" since then too, sclerotically accumulating and blocking...
I did not expect the ensuing changes since that weekend visit to Boston in 1996. And I did not expect the permeating stasis. And given both, it's hard not to look around (figuratively) and wish that the "hat" was the only thing leftover from that time. Because if any of it went, why didn't all of it go? How does a hat survive, like a leaf stuck on a tree during a January gale?
I have developed a(nother) bad habit.
You know all those cases where someone says something that sets your teeth "on edge?" You've heard of "gnashing teeth?" I'm doing it for real. Not when I sleep, which I used to do for a while as I fiddled with meds and nostrums. No, I mean while I'm awake, listening to various, nameless persecutors (who may number between 1 and several million--I'm not telling) say outlandish, mind-boggling bullshit
I don't show these teeth, because that's just not done. And so you'd hardly notice it, because it's not a snapping chomp, like an alligator or wolf. No slavering jaws
But when certain kinds of things happen lately, there's a brief silent incisor-grind, a minor molar-mesh, a quiet canine-crunch.
I need to stop it, and fast, because my parents lavished too much money (and I, too much time and pain) on my pearly whites, which once were supremely fucked-up, to risk them because somthing bugs me. I'd rather chip or lose them in a fight or bizarre gardening accident than because, like, stabbing a pen into my leg didn't "do the trick."
And no, I am not going into details about when this happens, but it's not caused only by politics, or sports. Though those are good guesses.
As I've said, I'm not big on New Year's resolutions. But dammit, I'm pissed (in an existential, self-actualized kind of a way), and that's gotta change. For example:
Why is dissatisfaction worth an unknown? (Trick question: it's not.)
What is UP with attractive women and pudgy, stringy-haired men? On the one hand it should be
encouraging ("hope for all of us," etc.), but on the other hand, it's just annoying, because I am not a pudgy, stringy-haired man; I must be doing something wrong.
What's to be done about the screwed up shit happening in the world today? How are are we gonna figure out how to talk to each other? Why is violence more acceptable than sex? Etc.
To wit (and speaking of pudgy, stringy-haired men): "....A mistake?? Or did He DO IT to us [beat] on PURPOSE? BECAUSE I WANNA KNOW."
All hail Updike, rock, and electricity.
I've been musing about the journey between instinct and fantasy. There's something that happens when you think about doing something even a little scary (and fantastic), and then all of a sudden it becomes impossible (and more fantastic, thereby).
And it never gets done.
If it's so easy for things to go in that one direction, it should at least be possible for them to go in the other direction. Instincts aren't supposed to be overcome so easily.
It's coming up to the weekend again. The Evens are playing on Friday. And the usual suspects will be saying farewell to Ian the Illegal Immigrant on Saturday. Somewhere along the way I need to put my winter wheels on, take my air conditioner out of the window, and move a whole bunch of 80s hip hop records to storage.
And follow through on an instinct, just for once.
Doesn't everything look better from 22000 miles up?
Actually....fuck it. I'm tired. I'll write more later.
I went karting today (with Tim, Bru and Billy) , which was fucking awesome. I'm weirdly bruised on my right shoulderblade from (I guess) the time I overcooked Turn 1 and slid full-tilt into the wall. Bru saw the whole thing from behind and says there was air under the car, and under me when it threw me up into the air.
And then he went racing past me, because I was, like, stopped.
But that's racing. Had a couple of clean races where Bru and I were at the head of the field and lapping people, and one frankly annoying race where I never saw the green fly after a caution period, and I lost about 5 positions because I thought I was following the rules. Won't let that happen again.
After a visit to Atwood's I'm grooving to a PJ Harvey record I thought I could never listen to again (stupid iTunes...), but finding it perfect and disconcerting all at once.
It was the soundtrack for the shit I went through in 2000 and 2001, but it always rocked. And now, of course, it still rocks because PJ Harvey doesn't know how to make any other kind of record. But it's newly and anciently relevant all at the same time, and that seems weird (becuase how can anything keep repeating itself like that?), and makes me want to hop back in the car, and drop the hammer.
While PJ comes along for the ride. There's no such thing as escape.
I've been in a...weird/bad bood for a couple of days, and I can't really explain why. And I can't sleep. (Ditto.)
I mean, I had kind of a busy weekend, with parents in town, the moving of summer wheels from a basement into storage, a terrible Carolina collapse against Georgetown (who I'm finding easy to hate again, like I did when I was 15). I also managed to let a domain of mine fall into the hands of a Sino-Caribbean holding company for at least the next year. And that's got me a little pissed too.
The weekend was really pretty good. I mean, Scooter Girl (who, though she understands a little something about screaming at the TV, was a real peach for sticking around through to the bitter end of overtime) and I got some pizza to take the sting out of the Heels loss, and I didn't go into the office on Monday, having already scheduled a day of writing documentation and getting roughed up by my accountant (on behalf of the IRS).
But it's now early Thursday, and there's an action-packed weekend in prospect: I'll be hanging out with/taking care of the eldest Lynch children, Remy and Otis; I might put my newly-liberated summer tires on the car; I'll dispassionately watch a couple of Final Four games (with no clue of whom to root for; can they all lose? No? Well, then UCLA, I guess...); Scooter Girl and I will get sweaty to the Nuyorican sounds of Antibalas at the Middle East, which will be super-awesome; and before that's over, it'll be April Fool's day, for fuck's sake.
And you know what April Fool's Day means....
But with all that in the pipeline, I'm still crabby; tired of "zones" (the Demilitarized, the Green...); fed up with politics and the DOJ and death and bent Ferraris and amendments and bills. And just....tired.
As I type this, I'm listening to Nerd Tank, a show on EVR described as "bleepwave."
I was in Phillytown this past weekend, visiting the 'rents and going to see Spamalot at the Academy of Music.
Scooter Girl rode shotgun in both directions, and did some navigating and van photographing.
On the way to dropping her off in South Jersey, we stopped in to see her niece, Anna, who is Miles-cute; and that's saying something.
Since I got back on Monday, I've been working at home because my office is undergoing renovations and there's plater dust everywhere.
Two weekends ago, I took care of the Lynch wienerdogs, who now, along with Harvey, are forced to bear the brunt of my ticking dog-ological clock, since I don't get to rumble with the Rocket anymore.
Scooter Girl joined me in the dogsitting task as well, proving expert in throwing a stinky donut for Otis, and (endlessly) playing soccer with Remy.
We then headed up to Cape Ann to see the sights, and came upon a spectacular used record/cd/tape/bric-a-brac store in Gloucester called Mystery Train records, where I bought (among other vinyl treasures) an LP of recordings of early 60s sports cars (Ferraris, Lancia, a couple of MGs and others).
I'm going to post photos of some of the album covers soon.
And also some more of the wienerdogs.
That same weekend I managed to avoid driving a Mazdaspeed3 while getting an oil change, for fear of what I might do to my bank account; so I'm still hoping my dad buys one, and I won't have to.
Speaking of car service, I have not taken my winter tires off yet; so, unlike last year, the current spate of cold weather (and impending accumulation of "snow and ice pellets") cannot be blamed on me.
I wore my Eagles jersey today, and got a virtual fist-bump from some dude on a moving truck outside my building: "I like that jersey, man. Go Eagles. Word."
I could say I've been too busy since November to write anything. And that's kind of true. I've taken a couple of trips, and am about to embark on another, longer one. But really I've been just chilling out.
I left my job in early December, when I realized a long period of dissatisfaction wasn't fixable. There's somewhat more to the story than simply that, of course, but that's what it boils down to.
Hence the chillin'. I've been slow about getting the Job Search Machine spun up to full speed, partially since I'm unsure about what I want to do with my life, and partially because I really enjoy not having a nine-to-five. So the motivation has been stronger to do "less" on that front, and "more" on all the others, rather than the other way around.
A big part of what I need to do with this break is get my life on track (or confirm that it is already on track). But that's quite a task. (New apt? Dog? What kind of job? Where? Why?)
So instead there's been the sleeping, and the eating and the housecleaning and decluttering (I even bought a shredder), and the going-to-PA, and the going-to-NYC, and (starting this weekend, because it seems I need an adventure) the driving-to-Florida-for-racing-school. Last weekend I realized that I had a unique opportunity to make use of my Skip Barber grad discount and take a (further discounted) class at Moroso Park. I'd been hoping this particular class would come to Lime Rock, but it looks like that won't happen till spring of 2009 at the earliest, after my special deal expires.
So off I go to drive MX5 Cup cars in the sun for 3 days. Whee!
I've done this kind of wandering around before, though not since my voluntary sabbatical in 1999. That was a 4+ week jaunt through VA, NC, TN, AR (no, I'm not kidding), MO, KY, WV, VA (again) and PA. That was more ambitious (though less purposeful, and I had a copilot, so maybe it doesn't count. Plus, that time, I was merely taking a break from a job I intended to return to.
Before that I have to go back to 1992, when I was truly jobless (and without prospects, even), and did a long solo swing from PA to FL and back, with lengthy stops in NC and AL. That was a bit of a long haul (in a 1986 Golf, no less--I was stylin'). It also seems like an unimaginably long time ago. Yeesh.
Other stuff continues apace. The trip to NYC was to see some friends who just had a little tyke, and some more friends who're about to. The wheel in the sky keeps on turning, I guess.
Deb got me hooked on It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Dexter and Weeds (in increasing order of brilliance). And we watched the Super Bowl last weekend with the usual suspects; we enjoyed the taut contest, even if everyone else was bummed out by the outcome. (I'll confess I was really not displeased, despite how much I hate my NFC East rivals, but I do hope I was gracious about all of it.) And now baseball is on the horizon.
So. There it is. I'm busy, but not. Regardless, I'm filling the time with the simple yet important things.
If the thunder and lightning (!) that that's happening as I type this doesn't portend the end of the world (or, I suppose, even if it does): The road is calling.
I had an absolutely nutty dream the other night. Actually, I continue to have them almost every night, but this one pegged the meter.
I was working for a scientist or chemist or something, and in a parallel story arc, we were trying to determine whether the world was susceptible to an oncoming plague (which I guess we weren't actualy sure was really oncoming--such is science). This scientist was also the Devil's official dog breeder. So we were at this farm in the country, and the sky was a really dark blue in the early evenin, and there's this sillhouette of the Grim Reaper (not exactly the Devil, I know, but Pure Evil nonetheless) against the sky over by a fence as the scientist is selecting which puppy from a recent litter is good enough for the Dark One himself.
I found myself holding a golden Lab puppy, which made Death loom larger somehow, and blackout more of the sky. I realized this was kind of a special dog and put him down (or handed him back to the doc), which made the Beast retreat slightly. Apparently I wasn't to be trusted with the Foul Fiend's own hound.
Back in the farmhouse, the doc and I and a couple of other people were setting to work on what was up with this plague. I then disclosed that I had been involved in a similar investigation trying to debunk another crisis; in that case, though, the panic had been started and we were trying to defuse it. (This time we were trying to decide whether there was anything worth panicking about to begin with.) I was very clear with my new colleages that I'd had nothing to do with causing the initial panic, and asked that they didn't disclose my involvement in the investigation.
After some discussion (during which I realized I was mumbling, which in real life means I'm talking in my sleep), the scene shifted and I realized that the whole plague/dogs of Beelzebub thing had itself been a dream. In the new dream, I was recounting everything to some people (nobody I know) and realizing that I needed to expand it into a screenplay. So we started coming up with names for the characters, and writing a script.
At a certain point, I went off to make a coffee run for my writing partners, paid for the coffee and was asked for my social security number. It being a dream, I gave it (never would do that in real life). I was waiting around for the self-serve coffee caraffes to be refilled, getting a little anxious about how long it was taking, when I checked my wallet and realized that several thousand dollars had appeared in it. I didn't really count the money, but there was a thick stack of bills in there all of a sudden. I attributed this to fact that Lucifer realy wanted us to make this movie about him and his dogs, and that's why he had made the baristo ask me for my SSN. (Because, being the Red Serpent, he was going to report the income to the IRS??)
I kept wandering around waiting for the caraffes to be refilled, marveling at/somewhat frightened by Satan's power. I continued to ask where the coffee was (mumbling in the dream which means I was mumbling aloud in my sleep), and why couldn't I get my coffee, and then finally I woke up.
Weird dream. Not sure it's any good as a screenplay, though.
Winter makes you do strange things.
So, I'm moving. For the 4th time in 9 years, and the 6th in 16. That's right; I just can't stay in one place too long. What's hilarious is that like the last time, it actually feels like it's going to be temporary. I have no real way of knowing, and maybe it won't but....it doesn't *feel* permanent. But it's still an upgrade, and since it's in the same building and I got a good deal on it, it's totally worth doing.
How *much* of an upgrade it is in question. The place is bigger, but not quite big "enough." Whatever that means. There's no garage, so I'll still be working on the car in the street. No dogs allowed. Lots of neighbors, so I still have to be careful about blasting music.
It also doesn't address the possibility that I need a wholesale change of scenery. But that's a much bigger question that I can't seem to answer while I'm up to my neck in crap. So as I gain enough room to, like, walk around, have a living room and host a salon, get cameras off the closet floor and into a cabinet, etc., maybe some of that other stuff will come into focus.
So what does that leave? The main thing is that I'm finally going through a variety of junk that's accumulated, touching and making a decision on pretty much everything I have. There's a lot of reacquainting (with things I haven't been able to use for years because I didn't have the space, like an actual couch, on which people can sit and watch baseball and discuss things), and disacquainting.
The latter is the most important. There's stuff that I've gathered (or refused to pitch) since the last move in 2003, of course. But there's also a ton of stuff that I simply put aside when I moved out of my last house. Stuff I couldn't have "dealt with" even if I'd wanted to, because I just didn't have the energy at the time, and the prime goal was simply to get the transporting of it over with as quickly as possible. I had no idea--none--that a lot of it was going to languish in a storage box for 6+ years, but there it's been, sitting unexamined in the dark. While I paid to keep it out of the rain, but also to keep it around just so it'd be there when I got to it.
As it turns out, I'm throwing most of that stuff out. And of course *could* have thrown it out before. (Actually the proper term is "freecycing", which is as time consuming and creepy as it is virtuous.) But almost all of that crud that I haven't looked at in 6 (or 10 or more) years? Gone. Or will be. Which means that the storage unit is going to be out of my hair.
Going through all that stuff is also a long trip down memory lane. And memory lane is always bumpy to some degree, so that's been a strange experience. Not the quite the unalloyed misery that I expected, but...not awesome. But in the long run, it's good. Also incomplete, and it probably raises as many problems as it solves, but hey. It's progress that wasn't happening before I embarked on this mission to move 100 feet away.
The whole thing often feels like little more than stirring up mud at the bottom of the pond, and I'll just wait for it all to settle out again and be like it was never disturbed. But I think/hope it'll turn out to be more like dredging a channel. Making it possible for people, activity, events to come *in* is important.
But carving a path through (some) muck--physical and mental--and trying to get *out* to open water and whatever is on the other side of it, is absolutely vital.
I know it tore off siding and exploited leaky roofs and blew things over and flooded basements, but I actually rather enjoyed the continuous gale-driven rain that lashed my windows for 3 days.
It provided nice cover for hunkering down and not having anything to do.
It's not obvious that anyone reads this, but....
Did you know I have a tumblblog with an even less-well thought-out design than this blog? I tend to link to other people's stuff over there, rather than here, but it's all part and parcel of what's going on in my head.
Or some fraction of it anyway.
I also tweet, but that's under lock and key for now.