Archive for September, 2004



I spent the entirety of the day attending to a hideously boring administrative task of mind-blowing tedium. Really, I think I would have had a better time being fitted for a colostomy bag. Once again, Wednesday, my sacrosanct writing day? Not so sacro and not so sanct.

After leaving the office late in the evening, I went to Hy-Vee to pick up some groceries. And I don’t know if it was just excessive fatigue, or if I was simply Hallucinating Lesbians, but it seemed as if the store was crawling with dykes. Probably just wishful thinking on my part. As a sort of coup de grace, k.d. lang was playing on the loudspeakers, further enhancing the effect of Hallucinatory Sapphistry.

Tomorrow will be jam-fucking-packed. I just spent the last two hours trying to work ahead a bit in a last-ditch effort to make tomorrow easier. At the end of the day, though, I’ll be giving an opening feature reading for the Vermillion Literary Project’s first poetry slam of the year. It should be fun.

Okay, I’m off to cram in a bit more stuff to try and make the pack less jammed before I go to bed!

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After running some errands I parked my car in back and came around to my front porch to find an extremely large squirrel ensconced in one of my rose pots, furiously digging away–great wads of peat moss flying through the air to land in brown clumps alongside the terracotta pot. Even though I’m standing about one foot away from him, he nonchalantly keeps digging away.

“Excuse me,” I say to him. “What, exactly, do you think you’re doing?”

He looks up at me for a moment, and then resumes his frantic digging.

“No, really,” I say. “I mean it. What do you think you’re doing?”

He pauses and sits back to regard me for a moment. We face off. He acts as if he hasn’t been doing anything at all. I notice that there are crumbs of soil in his whiskers. I tell him so. He seems terribly unimpressed, as if to suggest that I’m not going to make the CSI team at any time in the very near future. He gets ready to start digging again. There’s a squirrel-sized hollow in the pot ominously close to the roots of my rose bush.

“Hey!” I tell him. “I don’t think so! Am-scray, you little ugger-bay!” (For some reason, I feel compelled to speak Pig Latin to the squirrel, thinking that perhaps squirrels respond better to Pig Latin? Really, though, I have no idea why.)

The squirrel reluctantly abdicates his position from the flower pot and takes his time crossing the porch toward his tree.

I threaten to confiscate all his nuts. I realize later how that might sound to any eavesdropping neighbors. I tell him that his less-than-stellar attitude has been duly noted.

The squirrel, hand to God, swirls his tail at me in what can only be interpreted as the Rodential Equivalent of exaggerated eye rolling.

Don’t think that I don ‘t have my eye on him.

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Morning light sifts through the window later, and more tentatively, now–taking more time to pool into the hot buttery squares on the floor that the cats love to dip and roll themselves in, as if they were succulent pieces of lobster. Night comes shuttering down more quickly. The band of light that wraps around each day like a wide bright ribbon seems to be shrinking–like a favorite shirt that shrinks in the dryer, leaving the day’s wrists and hips uncovered.

There’s a red-headed woodpecker running up and down one of the wooden columns on my front porch. It stops to periodically tap on the column–bright head a thrumming blur, like the bobbin on a sewing machine. The cats come to the windows, nudge the curtains aside with their heads, and stare.

At night, lacy insects with bodies the color of green apples quiver around the windows–a shiver of filigree, drawn to the light inside.

Things quicken. The geraniums and dahlias burn their colors into the air more brightly, birds hurry in harried, twittering conferences, and I think reckless thoughts. Things quicken.

Why is it that I love the light the most only as it’s leaving?

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I find that I frequently feel as if I should be blogging about something, when in fact I’m thinking that perhaps it’s really all right for me to blog about nothing in particular. And that blogging about nothing in particular is, perhaps, a way of pushing through the times when I’m not blogging about a particular something. And it’s not even that I don’t have something to blog about . . . in fact I have a few rather large somethings that I’m interested in blogging about, but the large-ness of their something-ness is such that I feel as if I need more time to explore the topic. So perhaps it’s a matter of genre. The large somethings are little essays of sorts?

But I think it’s okay for a blog post to be about nothing in particular. Very Seinfeld-esque.

And short. Not that my blog posts are typically tomes or anything, but I’m officially giving myself permission to simply crack open a blog window and just toss off short little nothing-in-particulars. (Which, I suppose, may strike you as pretty much what I’ve been doing all along, but I assure you, there’s a difference!)

I’ve been busy with classes and writing. It’s been hectic, but good.

As I write this post, I’m attempting to push through the deadly 1950’s B-Movie Alien Swamp Fog typical of my first few waking hours. Steady application of caffeine is key at this juncture. My goal is to be able to at least fake some semblance of being a sentient being within the next 45 minutes, at which point I’ll have to put on my Professor Hat and go into school. Wednesdays are usually my sacrosanct writing day, but things are neither sacro nor sanct today.

So if my sacrosanct writing day has been taken over by meetings and administrative work, is it safe to suggest that my Wednesday has been profanicursed?

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Two years ago today, I posted my very first entries to this blog, the very first of which included a meditation on the sorry state of having a cat with a cone on its head, as a well as a highly incriminating picture of said cat. (This has always, from the very start, been one of those blogs that indulges in shamelessly gratuitous cat posting.)

One year ago today, I returned from a lengthy summer blogging hiatus to post a blog-a-versary post from Canada.

And here I am today, still blogging away. A few highlights of the past year in a road trip down the information superhighway of the archives:

Good Luck Writing Hat

Artichoke Heart House Rules

A Brief Note on Cat Poop

Howl at the Moon

Demented Tutu

Chocolate Bath Beads

Conversations With My Japanese Mother

It’s been a strange and wonderful year . . . working at home all year on the artist fellowship, a love affair that ended badly, the unexpected death of a beloved cat, and (six months later) the arrival of La Fabulosa Bean Bean, my new book coming out in March, lots of traveling, and now back to teaching again this fall.

I’m so curious to see what will happen next . . .

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