26 December, 2004

Night Falls

For a moment, the sky is a gasp of gorgeous, striated magenta, plum and lavender, a goodnight kiss before tenacious dark.

22 December, 2004

Perceived Warmth

Cold wind curls around unclad ankles, slithers up skirt to lick the backs of naked knees. Bravado and vanity notwithstanding, tiny scraps of white satin may have been an unwise choice.

The red would have been better.

20 December, 2004

The File

...kind of hush all over the world tonight/ All over the world...

My prowly ways are mitigated yet again by houseguests, and I retire earlier than the dinnertime coffee recommends as wise. Silence wakes me, loud, strong, keeps me awake, listening for something to cut through its depth.

I can hear numbers changing on my digital clock. The red glowing 5:45 is a lie. I haven't changed it back an hour, indeed have forgotten when it was I should have done so.

Audible is a rhythmic thrum of generator, distant, near, or perhaps the surge of power through lines just outside my icy window. Rise, peek out, touching chill glass. No snow.

Often a fresh blanket of deep damp muffles what few sounds occur on a snowy night. No. The sky is clear, the ground brittle.

The city holds its breath.


I search for a cache of cards I remember owning, know I kept in THIS DRAWER, so I hunt, hopeful, fruitless, and find The File instead.

I it find buried... but carefully, tenderly, even, among things I no longer use. I had set up the desk, the drawer, thinking to use it for correspondence. My computer took over, then died. Of course, until I call upon My Hero to help retrieve things stored on the dead computer's hard drive, I can't get rid of it. The whole area becomes a wasteland, an abandoned washing machine on an empty lot in a dirty city.

I think of the book I am reading, how Kath appears where she wasn't supposed to appear, as he searches for something else.

I pull out The File, thumb through it. Stories I remember loving, in obsolete blue of the now-defunct mimeograph machine, one of them dedicated to me. Two old snapshots, greenish grey, the subject blurry and all but unrecognizable,(though inept with an F-stop, I attempted to prove a certain level of competance as a photographer- stil do, actually), dated 1982. A tiny typewritten note, signed.

I searched for The File early this summer, remember coming across it as I moved papers from one arena of my life- 'arena' here meaning 'room'- to another. I have far too many 'arenas,' and have yet to settle on a system of paper-keeping that satisfies me. I remember thinking as I touched The File, ach, I'll probably never need this, I ought to get rid of it. And so when I failed to find The File this summer, I thought I had perhaps disposed of it. Evidently, I did not, tucking it away instead, treasure to unearth when I searched for something else.

A quick scramble garners a few additions. I tuck them into The File, and replace it. I may one day decide to toss the whole thing, but honestly, I doubt it.

It will be left for the living to ponder.

(There's A Kind Of Hush; Herman's Hermits)

17 December, 2004

Supermodel? No.

...cat moves/ That so upset them/ Zippers and buttons/ Fun to frustrate them....

In my quest for the perfect 'fabulously interesting page,' I hesitate to post something substandard, unworthy to bump ~this post~ into the archives. I resign myself to not finding it, resolve to break through my uninspired perfectionism.

Warm honey sifts through my hair, cups my cheek. Nestling into sweetness, I am tempted to remove my top. This September-golden sun teases me today, as it crippled me last night.

Fairness would require that I be incapacitated only by impending ominous weather, but there is little in the universe that understands 'fair' as humans have defined it.


I watch Victoria's Secret commercials that give the cachet of diamonds to women's lingere. Somewhat easier on the wallet. Possibly.

"Look at that, they're targeting the male buyer!'

"What? They've been doing that for two or three years now. Ever since the VS show during SuperBowl, they've had supermodels making legs and cleavage at us poor unsuspecting Mr. Sofaholics, with their wet lips and doe eyes, promising us that our women will look like them in that overpriced underwear, which they don't. Where've YOU been?"

Bristle, bristle. I KNOW I don't have supermodel legs. My ass, however, is world-class.

"Not paying attention to male-targeted advertising, I guess. Anyway, I've changed my mind. Now I DO want diamonds."


(I Know What Boys Like; The Waitresses)

13 December, 2004

Unseasonable Weather

March breeze blows through this December day, warm and wet and wild, like much-missed lover's kiss, taking with it vestiges of sun, leaving bonechill damp behind.

I protest and leave my ankles bare against the wind.

We venture out, grateful for gloves and BeachBaby's working heater.

The herrings pack the stores without benefit of sour cream to ease friction between unfriendly shoppers.

'Tis the season.

12 December, 2004

Altitude Factory

...I don't normally break into spontaneous dancing. - Martin Ewen

He tells me he's leaving his large duster.

"I only ever use it at Ren-nay-sance, anyway."

It sounds like a promise.

The children watch the video, then ask to watch it again immediately. I, mezmerized, agree, happy for the opportunity to stare, without risk of embarrassment.


They insist on leaving tonight, immediately after workshop. I'd rather they start fresh in the morning, but Izzy's got a point about traffic. They consent to tea and biscuits before they leave, and I give directions that (I hope) will cut twenty-five minutes from their trip, though they both seem easily as expert as Hilby at getting lost.


He shows us his trademark moves. I watch, unable to copy. My body is stiff from weather and more effort than I've expended since MotionFest. Though the stilts are light, I am less able than I'd hoped. Martin instructs me to smooth out my walk before I try any fancy stuff. I am surprised by how much control this takes. She watches, copies, modifies. I wonder if I'll be able to catch up.


Sun slinks across the porch; she blossoms from her sweater, revealing a top that clearly doesn't support the wearing of any bra.


Glittery branches embrace a streetlight, break murky velvet of rapacious fog. Once more into the mists, into the studio, to wrap ourselves with towels and tape, hoping for grace and agility. Wyatt Jaster is excited. The three children learn a fun little fancy thing that should reap a few laughs, if they can pull it off. It involves the two boys gently lowering Fuzzy to her knees and leaving her, in order to pick her up later. This presupposes that the well-meaning patronage will let the little girl sit on the ground without attempting to 'help.'


To combat the day's drear, I serve hot soup, bread, cheese. I make apologies for the peasanty meal, but the crowd of avid eaters seems well satisfied.

"You're a C cup!"

Yes, and?

"We're supposed to be the same size!"

Really. Are we?

"I went rooting through your underwear drawer, to steal a bra, and you're a C cup!"

Her indignation is palpable.

"I say I'm a B, which is a lie, because I'm really more like an A and a half."

Sorry for the inconvenience. (And a little surprised that she doesn't describe herself as an A-plus.)


Through unshuttered windows of the dance studio, grey mist streams in to wrap around us as we work, watching our reflections in silvergrey mirrors. The fitting process is awkward, hampered by lack of a stable stand. The windowsill works, but crowds our shoulders and we contort into disfiguring positions to remain balanced, which throws off the balance of the stilt. This is fine precision tuning, the likes of which I've never experienced on a pair of stilts. Or anything, for that matter.


"Honey, why does it make me crazy that Izzy calls me 'Sybil,' but it doesn’t bother me at all when Martin does it?"

"Because you think it sounds cute in the Kiwi’s accent."

"Yeah. I do."


December does not preclude top-down days. Izzy and I ride, searching for a particular sort of screw, with the top down all day long. In the long run, do self-routing screws make a difference in stilt quality? Only Izzy knows for sure. His standards of construction are incredibly high.


The gig, while not quite a clusterfuck, is annoying enough all around to be only very slightly fun. Still, I am grateful to it, for providing impetus for the Altitude Factory, which currently resides in my basement in form of lengthy chunks of hickory and assorted mysterious noises.


We wait for, and receive, a call. It is earlier than I expected. The boys are lost. Quelle suprise. They think they're in a bad neighborhood, but they can see St. Agnes, so I know they're safe. They'll be safer yet, in a bit.

I like being thought of as 'home.'

11 December, 2004

More Vivid

In a dream, I watch him work, until he looks up and notices me. He stops. The spell is broken, and we look away from one another, uncomfortable, until my dream shifts focus.

09 December, 2004

What? Um....

...It's a mystery !

"Mama, who delivers the mailman's mail?"

(Shakespeare In Love; Marc Norman & Tom Stoppard)

05 December, 2004

Oh. Yes?

...it's a mystery, wrapped in an enigma, wrapped in bacon...mmmmmmm....

And there are days when things happen that make you say FUCK! Very loudly, over and over again. And this may cause you to suspect that things happen so that you have something interesting to write about. To which I say, with all due volume, fuck!

And resist.

Now returning to the regularly scheduled format of "overly arty."

I find myself among the hot, the hip, the happening, the urban and the urbane, and (perhaps) the german and the germaine. I am at AVAM for the ---something that's called something far, far more hip than 'craft show'---- and the scent of freshly prepared vegan food wafts into my nostrils as I fondle a elegantly priced scarf.


The moon grins back at me, without the cat that left it.


Soft, he lays a hand on my shoulder. I am startled by the contact, and oddly pleased.

03 December, 2004

Roadkill Mink

...Faces look ugly when you’re alone/ Women seem wicked when you’re unwanted/ Streets are uneven when you’re down....

The world is weird. Everywhere I drive, I notice evidence of small creatures who have hurled themselves beneath the wheels of oncoming vehicles. Could this be Vehiculicide Rodentialis? Is there more roadkill, or am I just noticing more? Weird, either way.

More weird: No one in the world likes my favorite soup, yet I find it on Estelle's blog, which makes me say, qu est que c'est?

The Animal, who was the main topic of Letters last week, gets nary a mention this week. Perhaps he's been somewhat less inflammatory than usual? Probably not.

Baltimore native Mink Stole is in John Waters' new flick, A Dirty Shame, and Tim Kreider sports a drawing of himself and his friend Boyd as trouserless (okay, tightless) superheroes. Which is disturbing, because now I'm getting a disturbing image of Christopher Reeve as a half-naked Superman. Before he died. Imagining him as a pantless superhero postmortem goes way beyond disturbing into....well, I'm not sure what the word is, but it's really, really bad.

Other weirdness: It just so happens that I know one of the lawyers defending the Wisconsin shotgun treestand squatter. I don't know him well, mind you; he's CandyBoy's brother. And for another angle on this nauseating story,GunMuse ruminates.

Military regulations with a twist-- 213 Things Skippy Can't Do, courtesy of Mistress Matisse.

Martin returns to the scene of the mime, and will exit some number of hickory stilts lighter, as I retire our lumpish two-by-four models and become an airy, graceful eight foot fairy sprite. This I would not ordinarily include as a 'weird' offering, as it seems like a perfectly normal statement to me, but I begin to realize that 'normal' is really much more boring and pedestrian than I had previously believed.

(People Are Strange; The Doors)

02 December, 2004

...from the folks who brought us Bat Boy....

This is damn funny.

The photograph especially. Though I imagine the unwashed hordes will not recognize it.

Audience? Show?

...Punk ass trippin in the dead of night/ homies score and key is gonna fly, punk ass fly ....


So I said to her, I don't know all the terminology, like what the hell is a rule change, and what if she doesn't decide to go back to work, maybe she thinks, 'hey, this homeschooling thing is fun' and then you don't need me after all, unless it's scripted, because I don't know how much reality is in these shows, and I don't really believe in reality anyway.

(General uproar.)

That's probably the truest thing you ever said. You can stop right there. That's fucking hilarious.



See that room with the one small table?"

That's where we're playing.

It's a small crowd.

We can challenge them to wrestling.

And win.


Coco comes round as I make up with blue eyeliner, frowning. I lean back; she reaches forward to pat my breasts, lifting and squeezing each one.

"That's all you."
"I said I wasn't going to augment."
"I know, but... damn, that's a good bra."

I shimmy, coo, flirt, flip my hair, pose, lean, pout... and realize I've been playing versions of this role for fifteen years.

Two days ago, to the Prince: "See you. I'm off to find something trashy. Not that I don't have that already."
"Okay, something trashy and NOT BLACK."

Head to one side, Fluffy surveys me. "It's awfully short and tight, Mama."

I am the Vampy Other Woman. The woman in the Wife role is ten years my junior, but she frumps up nicely and I am convincing, despite the harsh fluorescent bathroom lighting's declaration that there are fine lines around my eyes, and I should make up a new lie about my age.


The moon hangs heavy on the horizon, juicy, like a slice of slightly overripe peach.

Perhaps we're all just hungry.

The reason the moon looks so big is because we're seeing it through all the moisture in the atmosphere.

And the water acts as a magnifier, does it? What are those stars over there?

That's the Little Dipper. I thought the moon looked big because it IS big.

You never saw stars in Jersey? It is big, but it's also very far away.

Not through the haze of smog, no. What are those red stars over there?

Shut up about the stars already! I'm so hungry...

Those are the Polar Lights.

Right, they're on that stick because that's the East Pole.

And those are the Polar Lights.

Should I go around this traffic circle one more time?

Why there's a traffic circle around a bunch of pine trees in the middle of an agricultural area occupies our fancies for the next ten minutes or so.

Giggling ensues. Chortles, hoots, guffaws, chuckles, snarfs, whoops, snickers, and all other words for cohorts who love one another's company making joyful noises occupy us for the fourty minute drive home.

All too short a ride, considering.

(Dynamite Hack covers NWA's Boyz-N-the-Hood)