Friday, July 31, 2009

Background processes

Over bevs, a friend told us that she whitens her teeth while working at the office. She puts in the bleaching trays and scowls at people who come over to ask questions, promising to get back to them in 40 minutes.

Brilliant optimization. Brilliant.

Monday, July 27, 2009

In your neigh-bor-hood

Since my lock out I've been thinking a little bit about the Prof. Henry Louis Gates situation. I have barely followed it at all. It seems that everyone has been focused on the cop, but I have to wonder about Prof. Gates' neighbors.

Someone called in the incident. Someone who thought it was weird that there was a man in their neighborhood messing with the front door of a house. Perhaps they would have called in the incident regardless of the man's appearance. Perhaps they didn't recognize him. Many of us don't know who are neighbors are these days. We don't recognize them on the street or know each other well enough to feel comfortable asking for or offering help. And I cannot help but think that this is actually the heart of the problem. The nation of strangers problem.

One summer when I was a kid, my father was re-roofing the house and it started to rain, a heavy torrential downpour. Four of our neighbors rushed right over and climbed the ladder to help him cover the roof with tarp to prevent the front half of the house from being flash flooded. We were not close, but we were neighbors and that's what you do for your neighbors. I have no doubt that if my father was struggling with the front door, someone would have come over to see if he needed a hand.

Someone was trying to be a good neighbor by calling the cops. But those good intentions coupled with a lack of information, a lack of relationships, led to a really crap situation because they didn't know their neighbors. It snowballed from there to what it is now.

I think next weekend I am going to have to start buying lemonade from the kids up the street and make it to the block party this year.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The grooviness of life

I got locked out of the house by contractors again. WTF. A girl shouldn't need a hammer to get into her own house. My super cute khaki's are covered in green slime from climbing over the fencing. I am a little bit concerned that I will go home tonight and find that I am again locked out. I am a little bit concerned that this will be a problem next week too. I need to take a lock picking class. And even after I got in and figured out what happened, I was fucking freaked out for the rest of the night and the better part of today. So I started writing a song about it and I feel a little bit better.

When I think about it, I am lucky that I didn't get arrested trying to get into my own home, as Professor Henry Louis Gates was.

In speaking with G about it, she attempted delicately to point out that I have a sort of home issue, that there are a lot of people for whom being locked out of the home, even for several days (like even 2 weeks) would not be such a big deal. It had not occurred to me that I was not exhibiting normal behavior, that my emotional and actual reaction was outside of what most would do. (CK also said something to the effect that she probably would not have gone to the lengths I did to get into my own home. It seemed normal to me, in previous lives I have had friends who helped me gain access to my apartments when locked out. G also attempted delicately to point out that perhaps at the time I was hanging out with a shady crowd and it's a good thing that I no longer roll with that crew.

But I suppose is true. I am very attached to the concept of having a place where I live, somewhere with a door with locks for which I hold the key. I am more of a homebody than I wanderer.

I have three orchid plants at my desk. They are all failing to thrive in my care. Lack of light, lack of proper feeding, lack of good root aeration, but mostly lack of me watering them. When watering them today, on the worst of them, a plant with enormous withering leaves and decaying roots that I recently snipped back to stumps, I spied a little green rootlet extending out from under the leaves. Despite my neglect, despite impossibly unfriendly conditions, despite a lifetime of suffering at my hands, it wants to live. Such optimism, such an impossible act of hope, it's damn inspiring. The plant is flipping me the bird and doing the best it can. In the face of this, what do I have to bitch about?


Monday, July 20, 2009

Can't please all the people all the time ....

A young man in black with sleeve tatoos, goatee and stretched ear lobes complimented me on one of my songs at the open mic last night. "It was so aggro. We were all rooting for you."

And then he told me how let down he was by the sensitiveness of my second song.

Alas. What can you do.

Friday, July 17, 2009

More than one way to peel a banana

As some of you know, yahoo and my friends are my internet window to the world. For better for worse. And so while all of you have probably already seen this. My sense of wonder on viewing this drives me to post the link to this banana video.

I am going to buy a banana after work and try it.