Sunday, September 30, 2007

Yay Dad!

This week I got my car all fixed up. The leak in my trunk fixed, new belts, new clutch, new brakes, oil change, seat belts, air filter, and a CV boot. Oooh, and new hubcaps for the two that were flung off during take-off one day. It is hard to handle my little filly. We go through parts, let me tell you.

Luckily for me my mechanic is the greatest Nissan mechanic on the planet. That is, my Dad was very recently awarded Technician of the Year for all of North America, and since the US is the GREATEST ASSKICKINGIST COUNTRY EVAR that really makes him Greatest Mechanic in The World and since Pluto isn't even a planet and the rest of outerspace is only balls of gas reflecting light, well that makes him the Greatest Mechanic in the Universe. FOR THE SECOND TIME!

Passenger Door

Anyway. Because I am his favorite child I get to go to Arizona with him in November to receive his award. It takes a stellar mechanic to keep my car on the road. Take off and re-entry are really hard on her. But I like to think of myself as precious cargo so she gets only the best care not even money can buy.


Saturday, September 29, 2007

Double double

We are painting our house, or more exactly we are prepping our house for painting. For Clark this involves scraping and pressure washing in the hot sun and the cold rain. For me this means requesting shifts at work that precisely coincide with the time this chore is being done.

I came home from work today with the front walk, flower beds and porch muddy and flooded. I walked around to the back door and rounding the corner found LO! two (two!) ladders and between them a fence limiting all passage into the house under their cursed hypotenuse.

double ladder walkway

Is there a wicked whammy on me? I still haven't figured out the double-negative or double-dead question. Luckily I found some helpful dejinx suggestions on Google. I wont be spitting on my shoe because the minute you tell me to not look at something every cell in my body starts burning with desire to look at that thing. I'd be a goner for sure. Gallows here I come.

Unless of course, two ladders negate each other then maybe a ladderwalkingunder remedy could do more harm then good. I'll let you know if I die tonight.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Bicycle at the speed of sound

A black cat crosses my path. One hundred yards another black cat crosses my path. They are deep pure negative-space cats. Is the second black cat a double negative good luck omen or am I double going to die?

The hobos do not leap out of the bushes with blades clenched between their teeth. The wet gritty ground does not slip out from under my tires. The slugs in their frame by frame blitzkrieg attack are not thrown into my eyes on the centrifugal slingshot of my wheel.

There ahead, there it is. A big white truck, a conspicuously spotless chrome bumper where the ghost of my death hides in the dent that isnt there yet. The driver is turning right at a red light, inching out looking left where the traffic is coming from. I am coming down the bike path from his right. He inches forward. I dont touch the brakes because the cats have crossed my path, the future is already there.

I guess I am not going to die there, yet felt so spectral nearly spooked the driver to death when he turned his head and saw me there. Not dead. Yet.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007



I don't know what to say to that. It comes and it goes? There are other things? Bigger things?

I am embarrassed lately to write what is deeply emotional. Pulling heartstrings seems cheap and easy, WOLFcrying and manipulative. I am sick of all that is writ in the casting of eyes. Just for now I don't want evoke anything at all. Or maybe it is just time to pull the plug. What do you think?

I decided that if I can't run the marathon this year I am going to walk it. I am already registered and paid up and deeply anti-thrilled to see the banners raised all through the downtown streets. I have had it with sitting on the sidelines quite frankly and I should be thinking about how to cross the finish line even if the waters rise or the sun falls to earth. I've been going about this all wrong. All along.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ride The Rogue

Ride The Rogue 2007

I spent today in the saddle. It was a perfect fall day with excesses of neither heat nor wind, the exception being the early morning in the river valley at the beginning of the ride. My dad and I set out into the freezing cold full of doubt and icy blood circulating like shards of glass through to all the tips of my body. I hurt so bad riding in that cold for the first hour that I thought seriously about pulling over but why? There was no where to go but forward so I surged and my blood surged and eventually I regained feeling in my fingers.

The only major climb came at mile 35-ish and continued until we crested the peak at about mile 40. It was on that hill that for the first time in almost 8 weeks that I attained the sheer therapeutic nirvana of physical exertion. Why do I ride like that on the hill knowing there is still sixty five more miles to go? Because I must. I needed it, oh man you have no idea how badly I needed my heart to beat 280 beats per minute till every valve is wide open and I am sweating creosote.

At the end of the ride I was weary but felt better then I think I have ever felt after a century ride. It was a great route, beautiful day and the miles flew by, too easy. But right now I am pretty exhausted and I have to drive 300 miles back to Portland tomorrow all by my self. Ugh.

I wanted to post something about Wednesday night when I rolled out onto the town at almost 10 o'clock at night, sang karaoke and closed down the video arcade a few short hours later with some world famous bloggers but Jenny and Brandon beat me to it, and said what could be said better then I could hope to have it said.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Time Based Art

I spent the evening down at the Wonder Ballroom to watch Some Cats From Japan but sweet mercy what is that feeling reeling through me? It that exhaustion? I think I could actually lay down my head and sleep. Right here in the loud noise and ambiance of art. My head nodded while I was standing there and so I finally turned and said I was ready to go. It was the only TBA:07 event I attended. Originally I was planning to use my tickets to see Fred Frith and Ikue Mori but something came up. I decided to stay home and be a bitch to my husband. Hallelujah.

I watched two and a half performances. The first one, Fuyuki Yamakawa had an enormous X of white tape holding a stethoscope to his chest so that his heartbeat, wired also to a cluster of lights on stage served as his bass instrument and caused the light to pulse in time while he played an electric guitar by not touching the strings at all and singing like a didgeridoo. (The vocal style is Tuvan, a kind of throat singing called Khoomei.) Listening to his heart made him seem both eerie and vulnerable. A beating heart makes me weak in the knees.

But right now what is making me weak in the knees is want for sleep.

Sweet Mercy.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The last of summer

Last weekend Clark and I camped with his family at Crescent Lake. We went by roaring motor boat to a white sandy beach on the far side of the lake that reminded me faintly of those Caribbean beaches with the blue water, but tainted lonely like those last homesick poignant days of camp where your footfalls echo alone alive with the echo dead of all the people gone home. In the thin mountain air I was too cold, full of wind and sered hot.

Still the white sand and aqua water is serene and mild if the wall of foliage is pine and severe. We snorkeled but there was nothing to look at but pumice sand and the eerie precipice where the water dropped off from 20 feet to over 180 feet deep. I fled with a twist at the waist and rapid panicked flippering. I don't care for deep water, shapeless dark water into which I can not see.

Down the beach a crowd gathered for a baptism. An elderly gentleman was dunked fully clothed after a group prayer while Clark and I watched, floating upcurrent drinking beer and peeing into the water. I figure we were straight marinated in holiness considering how much time relatively we spent in those waters having heard the sermon and prayers.

At sunset we skipped rocks until I could hardly lift my shoulder and in the morning all the muscles were aching and sore. I collect skipping rocks at all times and my collection more often then not maintains its integrity because I lack the foresight to pack it for mountain lake camping trips. The lake was rimmed with square porous rock and I had to make do after claiming to be a tri-county champion rock skipper.

I actually lack the upper body strength to own any titles but always make a good showing. If only I had brought my collection. What the 'ell was I thinking? I mean, its not like I can skip them across my frog tank. The truth is, there was a day I grew up a little bit and stopped carrying my skipping rocks in my purse and once put away it don't really surge back to life. I die a little each day.

Under no moon the stars were more then milky, they were weighty and impossible. I wish I could feel insignificant, cosmically proportionate under these stars but this phenomena seems to be just one more universal philosophers epiphany that eludes me. I still feel a full five feet ten inches, one hundred thirty pounds with big feet. I would die for a stellar-ratio perspective. If only I could be of so little value, at least to my own self.

When we came home I set to the task of finally returning all our duplicate wedding gifts and used the money to buy us a juicer. My new favorite food, up there with pickles, peppers and salsa, is super spicy ginger apple juice, or whateverisinthefridge juice.

I was at Zupans market buying ginger when I saw this beautiful vegetable fractal, which, says the produce guy, is a relative of both broccoli and cauliflower.

Friday, September 07, 2007


I don't know how to grieve for a dog and I don't know how not to. I mean, I just keep feeling sorry for myself but have to pretend that everything is alright out in the world and what I really want to do when the girl at the coffee shop asks me if I am having a good day is say that NO I AM NOT HAVING A GOOD DAY I JUST HAD TO PICK UP MY DOGS ASHES FROM THE VET and then, because I really did, what I did was start crying and tipped her 1.75 for my iced coffee and apologized and waited awkwardly for my coffee thinking I just ruined someone else's day which makes my day a double negative. JUST SHUT UP ABOUT IT.


Really I just want to spread it around so I don't have to feel it secretly all to myself all the time. That is why I tell. I also don't want to get rid of things that bridge the gap into the past because I know no matter what I do time will race on so he will be nothing but a distant memory, just a dog. Yet still, in the cupholder in my car is the cup for ice coffee with even the coffee still that I bought the day he died. And the mcdonalds bag that held his lunch that day, and in the fridge the can of pumpkin I fed him daily. I like the idea that these things are so fresh still that he was just touchable when this very cup was still here. But already it is getting too long for the cup, and the pumpkin will spoil soon and he is already ashes and already we are wanting a new puppy. Time is interminable, while grief only feels that way.

Saturday, September 01, 2007


It is so fucking lonely around here.

Thursday I wedged myself out of a tiny crevice of stillness and moving slowly soslowly put my bike together, found one glove, the wrong pump, a spare tire, put on my bike shorts, found the right pump, inflated the tires, the other glove, sunscreen, shoes, and water. With boulders in my head and boulders in my chest cavity and all rocky with resistance I got on my bike and started to ride.

I tell myself this is what I have to do if I want to deal with this well and part of me does not want to deal with this well. Part of me wants to sit in the dark wiping my nose on my sleeve throwing vases at anyone who even suggests turning on the lights.

I rode as hard as I was able for thirty miles till my chest was burning with a sensation similar to nausea. My heart rate has not been elevated barring anxiety for almost six weeks and I am amazed how badly I want to get back to my own self. At exactly 3:44 in the afternoon I stopped to tell Edison I love him and miss him something fierce.

I am ready for a year of Sundays. Despite everything, because of everything, one emotion I've been able to unweave in the tangle is relief. Sascha said to me ITS LIKE YOU'VE BEEN PUMMELED BY A MONSTER WAVE AND YOU ARE FACE PLANTED CRUMPLED ON THE SAND. I feel that way, like the wave has passed and I can finally breath and look around, survey the land as it lays about me after the wedding and the honeymoon, the moving and graduating, cancer and fractured bones...

For five months since Edison was diagnosed we have been holding grief and hope at bay and I am glad, no, relieved this ordeal is over for all of us. I am exhausted from secretly hoping and believing it might just be worms or indigestion or allergies, it might just be something I can bargain with. It might not be cancer, maybe its just a cold.

And finally, finally I can start grieving.

If I could have done anything to make Edison happier, more comfortable I would do it. If I could have any more time with him I would buy it at ANY cost but not for the look of pain in his eyes. Edison lived much longer then any of us expected and the vet said it was testament to the extraordinary care we took of him (which made me cry like crazy) but I think it was really because of the look of pain in our eyes and he was like MAN YOU GUYS REALLY NEED ME IF YOU ARE GONNA KEEP IT TOGETHER. That goddamn wave was cresting anyway and poised to break when he took his cue. The waters are receding and my legs are sound enough that I can stand up and run off to higher ground. Or ride at least.


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