Tuesday, March 16, 2010

just some stuff

Still sick. Day 9, 10? May have to spring for a doctor. Meanwhile I'd like to share this awesome poem.

Gigin alone at the bottom of the hill
Our protagonist named Bill
Sets his his sights on an Anchor Steam pint
All he needs is 13 quarters
Congregated in his hat
A crow, a scavenger type
California redemption provides him with his rent
Room and board inside of, a fifth, of comfort
As the wind penetrates his bones
His mind keeps focused
Tidal waves of sound catapulted
From his horn, wail like lovers
The coins don't drop consistent as does the mercury
His meter slows realizing a zenith
He's reached perfection
No one did see him die

Anyway that is a punk song by NOFX called "Scavenger Type". I'm terrible at understanding art, especially the abstract stuff... I listened to this song for 5 years before finally getting that it was about a homeless guy. I just liked the sound. It's dang mellow, especially being in the punk genre. But I gotta say the details are awesome.. like the mercury, aka temperature, dropping, the "fifth of comfort" being a bottle of Southern Co... Well, gotta take some Nyquil and try to beat this bug. Spring waits for no woman. There is so much I need to do but just standing exhausts me. Dang it. Wish me health.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Oh em gee. I have been sick for 7 days. That sounds like... a line from an old poem or song or something.
For seven days and seven nights,
I've suffered pain, but fought the fight.
Ok that was lame. I'm SLOWLY getting better, though I have a fever this mornin'. Managed to sleep through the last two nights though; previously I'd been waking up for hours of pain, fever chills, and more pain. I thought my throat was trying to kill me. Now my throat is almost better ( I still sound like a frog) but I've still got something like the worst cold ever. At least I've had an appetite through this whole ordeal (my stomach is currently reminding me). Course, trying to eat is real fun when your nose might as well be stopped with cement. I'm sure you really needed that detail. But I lose my breath just eating 'cause it's so ingrained in me to chew with my mouth closed. Anyhoo!

This morning I was waking up, praising the universe for another full night of sleep, when... Well, think about faces. Not expressions, just the flesh itself. Thin eyelids, soft lips, delicate, sensitive nose. Then think about cat feet. Little toe pads that precede wicked scimitars of death. Now if you were to put the two together, face and cat feet... but wait, let's start at the beginning.

For some reason, it started with a cat in a tree. Little Genevieve has not mastered the art of climbing trees. Strike that. She has not mastered the art of getting down. So I would go to the tree, reach as high as I could on tippity toe, and call to her. She would slowly, slowly inch to my hand, then climb down my arm (good thing it's winter and I wear lots of layers!) to perch on my shoulders.

In fact, I have become such a reliable bridge that I can even be used when hopping from the couch to the counter. I was bending over to scoop some cat food out of the bag when four little paws briefly graced the back of my head.

In fact, I seem to be preferable to even a four foot drop, because I so kindly bend my knees like a good elevator and the shoulder level drops to a convenient 18 inches for kitty to hop off of. Because here Genevieve wasn't stuck, no, not this time. And while I was busy thinking, "ooh photo op", she was thinking, "just a liiiiiiiittle closer...". And then boing onto my shoulder.

Just last night while brushing my teeth, I had bent over to spit, and all of a sudden there was Genevieve on my back, checking out my bathroom nook from her new observatory. Yes, I am ladder, an elevator, an observation deck, and a bridge. But you know what the best thing ever is? I'm also a safe haven. Because this morning, when feline feet met face, not a single claw was out. And they haven't been since that first rescue. So I may be a convenience, but I'm a loved one. Maybe not respected, but definitely loved.

Now if I could just get healthy dag nabbit.... It's perfect spring weather for the next few days and I've got gardens to till and driveway gravel to rake! Cats to serve and birds to feed! Arrrgh!

Saturday, March 6, 2010


OK I'm way too excited. I will try to type this as coherently as possible. It's the uber excitement. And the insomnia. But where to begin? 'Cause it's kind of a long story, or at least one full of digressions and side tracks. For example, I didn't know I could send pictures from my phone to my computer! Heck, I didn't even know how to access pics on my phone, I barely even knew how to take them. But my borrowed camera, see, does not have a handy dandy nifty shnifty battery pack. It runs on double A's, and it sucks those down fast! So it was dead, and I needed pictures. Thus, the process of evolution. I figured out my phone cam. Necessity. The mother of invention.

So, anyway. Last winter, we hadn't harvested all our carrots. When the earth finally thawed, we dug up the sad leftovers. The frost had split them, warped them, disintegrated them. Sadness. Well, this year we again had not harvested all our carrots. We had a ton! They grow like weeds here. Except much tastier. Now, part of why we didn't harvest them was NOT laziness. It's that the earth itself acts as a root cellar. No pun intended, but carrots are roots. And omg I just realized that root cellars were the first "fridge". Necessity. Invention. Turn on, ye wheel o' time and life. Sorry. Insomnia here. End digression.

As I mentioned earlier, spring is starving time. The jobs are as dried up as last autumn's corn stalks. I really wanted to make some soup, and I knew there were carrots down in the garden. However, being under a couple feet of snow and all, the location was hard to pinpoint, but I guessed it out. An educated guess, of course. I only say that because I think on every test I ever took in high school the instructors would precaution us with, "now, if you don't know the answer, make an educated guess". I found the carrot patch. But the earth was rock hard frozen solid. I was bummed; I figured whatever we had left unharvested was ruined. Unreachable, anyway, to find out for sure, but what hope was there that they could have survived a frozen bed of dirt? This is the bed of dirt:

The last few days it has been warm, in the 50's even, the snow is all but gone (it hides in the shadows like a sneak), and it's like I can taste the memory of summer, a half remembered dream, a promise, a silent hope. Ugh, did I mention the insomnia? It's making me woozy. Anyway, this morning I felt, well, hungry, and angry at winter. I set my jaw and clenched my fists with determination and I swore that I would find those carrots, whether they were dessicated or not. I flung my trowel into the ground with the fervor of a spartan against his enemy. And holy cow to my surprise the dirt was soft and totally yielding. The tundra-like perma frost has been defeated. And even more amazing, the carrots. Oh sweet carrots, how do I love thee? The carrots had survived, resisted even, Old Cranky Man Winter. Not to mention this was a record year of snowfall, the most in 17 years here. It was a fabulous, joyful harvest. Food pulled up out of the ground, I felt like I created it, like Tom Hanks in Castaway, when he finally makes fire and he shouts out his prowess to the world. Probably it was god, or mother earth, or the great spirit or whatever you call divinity. It was certainly a gift. "Carrots! I have carrots!!!" Sing and rejoice. Have some soup. Warm your bones in the sweet sun, your hands wrapped around a steaming mug.

And my last digression, speaking of soup and carrots: When I had my wisdom teeth out (which is the nicest way to put it, seeing as the dentist had to actually cut into my BONE to extract those suckers and it took weeks to recover, adding the upper tooth hole tearing into my sinus's making me sick so really it should be called 'having body parts torn, mutilated, and amputated) for two thousand dollars WITH insurance.. I'm so not bitter. I swear. Ok maybe just a little. ANYway, during that awful recovery, my mom took really good care of me, and her mom, my Granny, came over and made me carrot soup. So dang delicious. I couldn't eat solids, and I actually lost something like 15 pounds in the first two weeks after that traumatizing yankage. She even bought me a blender to make the soup with. If I had the recipe I'd share it pronto. Hey, look at that, again the wheel turns and I'm back at an earlier realization: people who give their shoulder to lean on, wanting nothing, and giving out of pure love. I feel damn lucky, and I tell ya, it's not just the carrots.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Spring is Starving Time

At least that's what the pioneers called it. They'd just about exhausted their winter stock and it was too soon for the garden to be producing. One bad winter, according to Laura Ingalls Wilder, (a hero of mine, have you noticed?), they each had 2 slices of bread a day. For like two months. It was getting to where they were debating; kill our milk cow for meat now and go with out milk and butter for a year? or hang in there? And the cow wasn't even producing milk in the winter 'cause it was her starving time, too.
Well, I'm not THAT poor, heck, I'm living like royalty compared to that. I'm piecing together a teeny bit of work here and there. I'm getting very creative with making my own breads (rosemary, yum!), scoring on food from the dollar store (one buck for a box of saltines!) and dried beans and stuff. You can make like 3 pots of soup out of a dollar bag o' beans, an onion, and a couple carrots. Eat with your homemade bread and yay!! And I do allow myself the luxury of butter. Everything's better with butter! And cheese. Cheese is hard to go without. Ooh! In fact, I'm making homemade pizza today! Dough from scratch, sauce from scratch, and cheese and onions and garlic for toppings. Drool.
Luckily Old Man Winter is losing his titan's grip on the landscape as well as the snowbird economy. Way too slowly, though. I want to work, and garden, and be warm and merry! I want a full fridge, a full bank, and of course a full smile. I tell ya, Frugal Frannie looks like Paris Hilton right about now. At least there's always loved ones. Peeps who give you a good shoulder to lean on out of pure love. And laughter. Not having laughter would be like not having oxygen. Let me share some with you.

A: Genevieve is oh so innocently watching the birds.
B: A beautiful bit o' bead work my friend handmade for me! That's lot's of B's.

C: Not so innocent anymore. Or graceful. No, you cannot pounce through windows. Contemplating level of stuckness versus possible unentanglement / escape routes.

D: "Hmmm,what is this fun shiny dangly thing?"
E: Really cute toes.

F: F is for fail. Because suddenly shiny dangly thing looks like good noms! "Nom Nom.... Ack! Mom! I wanted that!!" Yeas dear, it's only the THIRD globe I'm on since you broke the first two. Luckily this time the only thing busted was my gut from laughing so hard.

Well, there you have it. Life is ups and downs and spin you around till you're laughing or sick. Still, sometimes I think I'd settle for a kiddie ride. The only time I want the full fledged roller coaster is when I picked that line and when I get off the ride I can leave on nice, solid, level ground. And get a funnel cake. With powdered sugar. Mmmm.