Wednesday, July 18, 2012


In my desire to be fully present in life so that I can live more as a participant than a spectator, I have begun trying to be aware of my senses. Instead of blocking out the physical in favor of the interior landcape, I am stopping to smell the roses, so to speak.

Latest sensation to enjoy: books.

One of my Portenzo iPad cases is covered in buckram. (If you are not sure what a Portenzo is, I strongly urge you to get there——right away. They are superb craftsmen.) Buckram is the stiff cover material that you find on the old-fashioned bound periodicals. It has a very distinct feel, whether it's freshly made or worn with age.

My happiest sensory memories come from libraries. I love everything about books—the way they smell, the colors of the covers, the different typefaces, the weight in my hands.

When I find myself anxious, I find that I reach for the buckram covered ipad and stroke it lightly with my thumb and fingertips, ghosting over the engraved title (There and Back Again, with no apologies to Tolkein). It feels solid, stable, enduring and true.

I am not oblivious to the irony: I am a strong proponent of the e-book format. I rarely buy a physical copy of anything these days, because I have problems with storing them. My house is already filled with books, and I have rapidly run out of convenient shelving areas. I buy traditional books only when I treasure the content so passionately that I feel a strong urge to enjoy the heft, scent, and sound of pages turning. And even then I might get a virtual copy, for avid re-reading in my travels.

What makes you feel secure in this world filled with uncertainty?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Musings on writing

I have been longing to write for quite some time now. But everything I came up with felt like hopeless navel-gazing. But today I think I have something, just a little sliver of a thought. It goes something like this:

Today I thought, This is it, no more excuses. I have all the equipment necessary. I have a QUIET, CLEAN house. So I set myself up in a lovely location, and turned everything on.

And then realized that if I didn't unload and reload the dishwasher, I would be viewed as a selfish, lazy slacker. (Even more so than I am already.) And that would not do.

After tackling the dishes, I sat back down at my lovely writing station that is everything I could ever ask for.

And opened Twitter, because it's been awhile and I was interested if AppleBitch or TUAW had posted any new rumors or sightings of the New iPhone.

Got caught in a very long, involved Wired article about art and computers and psychology and stalking laws and national security.

Wow. It was hard to break away from that one. It gave me a lot to think about. Many of my thoughts were I didn't have a foggiest clue about all the programs that were being discussed, and how I should go to the hyperlinks and learn more, they sound very interesting.

But I didn't because I realized that I hadn't done any laundry and I know the clean clothes are getting scarce for the two males in my life. So I gathered all the equipment and set to it.

That ironing board is driving me crazy. I should be able to fix it out of the locked position. I am an intelligent, educated woman. There is no reason that this should stump me so.

After wrestling the recalitrant board out of the laundry closet I set it down on the table to examine the problem. Soon came to the realization that I had no idea what the problem is. But that doesn't stop me because I never quit. I went to the internet and googled the problem. I was pleased to see that there were lots of sites that offered me me any approaches and ideas.

Became disillusioned when I saw most of the answers consisted of, ditch it and get another one from Target. But still I persevered, and watched three different videos that showed step by step how to close this misbegotten tool of Satan. Because who the hell irons on holiday, anyway?

Wrestled with it some more. I will not stop, I am not quit, until I have triumphed!

After ten more minutes of peering at it, trying to force metal to bend and give way under the sheer force of my will alone (because I am afraid of break my fingernails and I don't have my trusty toybox with me) I quit and threw the offending piece of shit into the laundry closet.

And went back to bed.

And lo, I got a sliver of a thought and enthusiastically began bashing away at my keyboard.

And then my wrists began to complain mightily that the angle I was forcing them to hold was not natural and they would extract vengeance at an unspecified hour if I continued to force them into cruel bondage.

So I picked everything back up and headed back to my beautiful writing station, only pausing to get Jim's headphones so I can write with music. My muse loves music. I haven't named the wench yet, but I am thinking about Calliope.

Hm. Calliope. Will be back in a moment, I want to wiki this.

EDITED TO ADD: Calliope it is!! Now that I have her name, perhaps she will not be so coy and come visit me for tea. Or rum. Whatever. My door is always open, Calli (do you mind if I call you that? Silence means consent!). Please come back. And feel free to knock me on the head with a large metaphorical hammer if I do not respond immediately. I know I was cruel and neglected you once I got into University, but that's been too many years now. Can we just let bygones be bygones, can we just get along? We were so very close once.