Random Tidbit

Here I sit in Bend, Oregon, listening to some pretty cool jazz music.   BF is playing with a tenor duo and drummer.  It’s good.  I like this venue because there is a place for me to sit in the back and goof off on my computer while listening.  I love it.

I am moving to Hawaii in less than two weeks.  I am not prepared.

little bits

I’m in the middle of so many books.  About ten I think.  This non-sequitur comes from nowhere, as non-sequiturs are apt to do, the sort of thought that has probably been floating in his brain for a bit and is finally expressed seemingly out of the ether.  I am in the middle of so many books too, I tell him.  Later I think that I would have finished these books, but I’ve been fucking instead.  Quite a lot actually.  I could have said that. He would have chuckled.  He would have known what I meant.  But that response only came just a bit ago when I was reading one of the aforementioned books.  Actually, this is a new one.  I’m already in the middle of how many books?  Maybe five or six instead of ten.  Then I found one of my favorites yesterday while sorting through boxes, one I have been wanting to read lately, one I went searching for a few weeks ago and did not find.  So this book moves to the top of the pile in the bathroom and will go with me when I’m a passenger in the car with him or have to go somewhere and wait.  I will finish it quickly because it has been tickling my brain begging me to read it again.  In fact I had to stop myself from buying another copy because I knew this one was nearby.  I just had to search further into the boxes.  And I did that.

I do not like packing.  I do not like moving.  It’s worse this time because I already did it once last month and it lasted several weeks.  I’m down on stuff, but these are things I did not finish or sort or have to decide whether they go to Hawaii or storage for another country I hope.  I have to pack so things can be shipped without breaking.  So far this hasn’t been too terribly difficult because the belongings are not breakable.  My friend, Noelle, helped me with breakable things at the old house, so I’m hoping not packing breakable things will remain not too terribly difficult.

Okay, I know he got his own post a few days back, but Chet Baker…baby.  I’m listening to Chet Baker in Paris.  I’m so in love with that voice.  Man says Chet made the ladies’ panties wet.  You know, I can see it.  Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your perspective), heroin and cocaine addiction isn’t exactly attractive, so I don’t think he would have done much for my panties, but still.  The man can sing and blow a horn.  Man told me a joke that goes What does a trumpet player use for birth control?  His personality.  This may be true, unless one is Chet Baker.  He could have the worst personality and that voice and face would go a long way to alleviating any personality flaws…like drug addiction for instance.

Well time to go investigate iphones.  Yes, I know.  How cliche’ is that to go and get an iphone right when they come out?  I don’t care.  My contract is up with Sprint and my phone is broken, so I’m going to get an iphone to go with my ipod and macbook.  Then I can write all of them without capital letters on the fronts of their names.  The computing world’s version of e.e. cummings.  Brilliant.

mary jane white and red

Mary jane red and white, smoke a grape through a pipe. Mary jane white and red, eat a chocolate chip instead.

These days have been filled with beautiful moments. I keep forcing myself to live in the moment because I do not want to lose them. I will miss these moments when they are gone; I do not want to spend them thinking about a time that has not yet arrived.

I am in a room next door to a room where Man is playing music. Good music. Tight. I like it. It’s nice to be able to sit in here and play around on the computer and write while simultaneously hearing music. He’s doing a little piano solo now on keyboards. He’s got it set to an organ sound, plus he’s playing some left handed key bass as well. This appears to be a good and appreciative crowd. Their applause seems genuine and interested. I peeked in and saw some heads bobbing. That’s always a good sign. I just can’t get it when I see people listening to music and they seem not to feel it at all, especially a swinging jazz quartet with an amazing piano player.  Actually, all the players sound really good.  I’ll go in and listen from there in a few, but being in here is nice too.  Mellow.

Right now is one of those moments when I wish I drank coffee and could. I feel like lying down and taking a nap. I feel like I’ve had a sugar crash, but I haven’t eaten much sugar. I’m sleepy. Well this is a crappy post. It’s my pitiful attempt at showing up, but I’m too tired so I think I’ll go take a nap on the indoor outdoor carpet and dream of the sun.

Chet Baker

Ah, Chet. How horribly, dysfunctionally sad you are. Were the demons who drove you to infuse your body with toxins the same that inspired you to play? Are you the Sylvia Plath of horn playing? Your voice is like butter, so smooth and creamy, I want to lick your words. Your playing is sensual, lovely, golden. The sounds you create are so perfect, yet everything else about you is a disaster. Would your music be so beautiful if you were not so tortured? I suppose we will never know…

Melancholy

Well, by accident I just discovered full screen mode for typing this blog.  Wow.  Seriously.  Here I am all somber wanting to write and try to expel some angst and I accidentally hit a button and get this.  This is cool.  It is a nice little distraction.

What is the source of my angst?  I am moving to Hawaii.  I do not want to leave the man I love.  The thing is that if I take him away from the Portland picture, I do not want to be here.  He is the only thing I want to stay for.  I do not want to leave him.  If I thought for a half a second he would want me to go with him wherever he goes, I would do it.  But I just don’t think he feels as strongly as I do.  I could be wrong.  I haven’t asked.  It’s one of those things where I don’t know if I want the answer.  I will probably say something.  But in the meantime, I’m going to Hawaii, at least for now.

Why Hawaii?  There are two places on earth I would like to live.  One is Australia.  One is Europe.  I mainly chose Australia because it is an English speaking country.  Plus it is far away from wars and whatnot.  I’m afraid of wars and whatnot when it comes to my little girl.  I want her to be safe.  Perhaps I am naive in thinking that because Australia is farther from the wars we will be safer, but this was part of my thinking.  We also seriously considered Spain, and actually, I would still consider Spain.  I speak enough Spanish I could pick it up, and Milla speaks it as well.  But it is so close to the middle east.  So for now, I chose Australia.  In the meantime, on the way to Australia, I did not want to live in Portland anymore.  I have to leave here.  For an on the way to Australia place, I chose Hawaii because I have lived there before so it is a known entity.  I also know people there.  And Milla was accepted to school and got financial aid there.  Plus it is sunny all the time and I get seasonal affective disorder in this gray and damp place.  So why not, right?

Why not.  I did not expect to fall in love and I did not expect to fall in love like this.  This feeling is indescribable.  It feels like all the silly love songs from fifty years ago were written for me.  But it also feels like all the songs written about heartbreak are for me too.  It’s such a weird place to be in.  I know I have to leave, but I cannot bear the thought of leaving him.  This will be the hardest thing I have ever had to do.  Unequivocally.  I do not know how I am going to manage.  Well, that isn’t true.  I will manage because I always do by putting one foot in front of the other.  But I wonder if I’m making a monumental mistake, going there instead of I don’t know what.  Maybe he would not be the way he has been with me if I were staying here.  He has been wonderful.  He has been exactly what I want in a relationship.  Even the hard parts.  I have learned more about relationships from him than from all the others put together.  I have learned more about myself.  And then there is the fact he is just plain brilliant and so much a match for me.  I am completely blathered.  Love.  Damn biology.  His immune system must jive with mine.  His genetic footprint must be what mine needs to propagate.  Silliness.  Plain silliness.  I alternate between love songs and melancholy.  I cry.  All the time.  I am on cloud nine.  All the time.  What a disaster.  I take the steps I need to take to make this move, but I take them reluctantly and after procrastination.  I am getting done what I need to get done.  Yet I’m going through it in a daze.  Is this how it’s supposed to be?

So I write and hope it will help me through.  I have been writing, even though the dates on the posts don’t say so.  There have been things I cannot share because they do not affect only me.  There have been things that have happened he might not want others to know about.  I don’t know if anyone he knows reads this, but I do not want to take a chance, so even though I must write about these things, I keep them private.  I hope writing will get me through.  I hope when I land on that island in the middle of the world’s biggest ocean and my heart is crushed with longing I can write and it will be okay.  It’s something anyway.

Not Mine Anymore

I had to go over to my old neighborhood and pick up a prescription.  One of the benefits of being on the Oregon Health Plan is that they assume every move you make is intended to defraud them, so they take steps like only allowing you to get your prescriptions from one place.  If you want to change to another place, you have to expect hassles, paperwork, and delays.  It’s all fun.  Because of this, I needed to drive out to Milwaukie to get my Tamoxifen.  Since I was already over there, I drove over to the old house to say hi to my previous neighbor and also to see if there was a ceramic sun I forgot and left at my house.

I could see an immediate difference upon driving up.  There used to be a giant Camelia bush by the front walk.  It provided shade and lovely flowers in the spring.  Gone.  An azalea had been completely removed from near the front porch.  I could see into the house when the new owner came to the door and the built in bookshelves I had painstakingly built into the living room wall were gone.  And the backyard….wow.  My neighbor let me peek through her kitchen window to see.  Nothing left.  All the plantlife in the back was gone.  Part of the charm of the yard for me was the abundant plantlife.  It kept the yard and house shaded and floral.  Nothing like cutting everything down in the middle of summer to ensure it doesn’t grow back, huh?  On top of it all, they had thrown away the ceramic sun.  Good times.

Oh well.  The house isn’t mine anymore.  It’s decorated in SE Portland antique store chic.  It looks like a Martha Stewart magazine from 10 years ago.  It’s annoying.  Seeing the house that way, I knew nothing of it was mine anymore.  Guess it’s more evidence it is time for me to move on.

Who Wants Me?

WordPress is great.  It gives me lots of information about my blog.  I get statistics on how many people read it, an analysis of top posts and searches, all sorts of things.  One thing it shows is what searches someone used to find my blog.  There have been some VERRRRY interesting searches that somehow found me.  Stuff like “spank nun big broomstick.”  Huh?  I’m just the messenger…don’t ask me.

Anyway, nearly daily there are searches that locate my blog by looking for my name, often several a day.  What I want to know is, who is looking for me?  It’s weird, knowing people are searching your name.  I mean, I’m not naive.  I know people google search each other all the time.  I do it.  It’s fun.  But this happens for me nearly every day.  This means someone out there is searching for my name quite a lot.  I know of 2 other Lara Gardners in the USA.  One is an attorney in Florida.  The other is some sort of scientist who wrote some articles.  So it is possible they are the objects of these searches.  Yet some of them are probably for me and it’s kind of weird.  Who is looking for me?  I wish I knew that.

Weeds

Okay so I’m completely addicted to the television show Weeds.  BF has it saved on his hard drive so we watch it on his computer.  I think we’re nearly through with Season 2.  I love it.  I avoid getting into these cable shows that have been put on dvd because if I like them, that’s all I want to do.  I watched the entire series of Six Feet Under, like the first four seasons, one after another after another for weeks.  I stayed up until all hours.  I ate, slept, and breathed it until I finished it.  Then I had to wait for the final season to come out, and rented it the day it showed up at the video store.  It had an original release date that never happened and came out a few weeks later.  I was BITTERLY disappointed on that first date when I ran down to the video store at the butt crack of dawn and my show was not there.  When it finally arrived, I watched the entire season all in one sitting.  How sad is that?

So since then, I’ve avoided serial shows.  But BF suggested Weeds and after his description, I was intrigued.  We have spent literally HOURS watching it.  I’m thoroughly addicted.  I think about it when I’m not watching it.  Good times.  Isn’t it fun to waste hours on something like this?  I’m being a productive, useful member of society, staring at a screen and having it entertain me.  I love it.

Thought Clarification

Yesterday while driving home a man who had been standing at the curb waited until I was about 3 car lengths away to step in front of my car.  I thought to myself, idiot must want to commit suicide. Then I thought what if I wanted to commit suicide?  I would have nothing to lose in running the man over.  This is what inspired my thought for the day yesterday.  While I have on occasion contemplated suicide, I was not doing so at the time I had this thought.  Just thought I would point this out, in case anyone was wondering.

Her Hair was Attractively Styled

I am not one of those women who is able to maintain a perfect beauty regimen. In fact, I’m pretty pathetic. I sit here typing at the computer and one of my nails is splitting. I am nearly pathologically unable to quit playing with it until I find a nail file. The urge to pick and chew at the piece that is sticking out near the split is overwhelming. I finally give up and bite the damn thing off, making the nail ragged and ugly. The fact the nail split in the first place is part of the evidence against my ability to maintain western trappings of femininity. Don’t get me wrong, I do not go out of my way to eschew such contrivances. I don’t purposely dress in sacks or not shave my pits or grow a mustache or not wear deodorant or any of it. In fact, such things would bother me immensely. I actually LIKE certain aspects of western trappings of femininity, I’m just not very good at them. And so I exist in my little, pitiful, half-baked attempts.

I have a wonderful hairdresser. She does such a lovely job putting in highlights and cutting my hair. My hair is naturally curly and I straighten it. My hairdresser knows this and cuts it accordingly. She straightens it for me beautifully. Even I am capable of straightening it fairly well, and during the time after it is straightened and before I go to bed or get it wet, it looks moderately attractive. Yet I’ve developed a habit of staying up too late with the male person in my life, so when I have to get up and go to work, I do not want to spend the extra 45 minutes showering, straightening, and coiffing. I would rather sleep. The result is that my hair has odd bumps in it in places where it has been slept on, the places that tried to return to their natural state of curliness, but did not quite make it. Most mornings I throw it into a ponytail, make a feeble attempt at presenting my bangs in a semblance of order, and head out the door.

Oh, and the bangs. Do you know why I have bangs? I have not had bangs in over a decade. I’m not partial to them. Last summer, my hairdresser noticed my hair had thinned significantly. She deduced this was the result of radiation treatments the winter before. Small problem…radiation does not cause hair loss unless the radiation is on the hair. Mine was not. We decided stress was the culprit then. In spite of my attempts to stave off the loss, the hair continued to break and thin. One morning while straightening my hair, a large chunk of hair fell right into my hands. Its ends were burned brittle, sizzling and smelling as I held them. WTF?!?!? It turns out my blowdryer had been sucking hair into its coils and burning it off my head. Hence, the hair loss. I went into hairdresser and described what had been happening. As she laughed in horror, she attempted to repair my mangled head. The result was bangs. I was forced into bangs and layers to deal with the trauma. Yikes. The hair is growing back now. It is healthy and it is thickening. I have pretty thick hair so it’s noticeable when it thins. Since having this happen, I am grateful for my thick hair. I like the way it hangs when it’s thick. It’s pitiful when it’s thin.

The other beauty area in which I am woefully lacking is makeup. I can’t wear it. When I do, I forget, rub my eyes or cheek, and smear it across my face. Lovely! I wear lipstick. I’m actually kind of abulic about wearing lipstick.  The lipstick takes over and informs me that it will be worn, whether I like it or not.  Have you ever seen a baby mouse or rat?  They are so cute when they are really little, just after they get their fur.  What is really cute is how they try to wash themselves before they are physically able to do so.  It is apparent that they are driven by forces outside themselves to clean themselves like they do.  It’s the same way with me and lipstick.  I’m driven by a force outside myself to wear it.  Often when it’s on it’s way to my lips I realize I’ve unthinkingly reached into my purse and removed the stick to put it on.  It’s rote.  I do not like the feel of my lips without lipstick; they are too dry. I also do not like the look of my lips when they match my skin. I like them to look reddish, like lips. I like them to show. Women’s magazines often ask some movie star what one makeup item she would take to a desert island (in order to attract the palm trees or crabs, I suppose). My one desert island item would be lipstick. It’s true. I admit it. Please do not think less of me for this. Give me points for admitting it.

My worst beauty area by far is my fingernails. I cannot keep them manicured properly. I try, oh yes, I do. I file them. I keep them even. I attempt to force back the mountains of cuticle. I let them grow so they look sort of long. I just can’t keep them looking pretty. I have paid for professional manicures before. They look ragged and sad within hours. It’s simply not worth the money. I’ve also found that nails that are too long get in the way of doing the things I like to do. When I do such things with long nails, the long nails break. This is not attractive. I do pay for pedicures. I like having my feet pampered and since my toes are further away from people’s lines of sight, they don’t notice the dings as much as the ones on my fingernails. Part of the problem is that my fingernails are ridiculously thick. Where many of my friends complain of thin and brittle nails, I have the opposite problem. One split goes deep and filing it away does nothing. I have to cut the whole thing off, behind the origin of the split, or it just keeps going. Not good. I’ve had some nasty splits that went into my nail bed because of this. They hurt. I am also constitutionally unable to keep polish looking nice. For one thing, my nails are short and fat things. They match my short and squat fingers. For someone who is rather tall and very thin, I certainly have the fingers and fingernails of a troll. They are like mini sausages. I do not have willowy fingers or hands. My hands look like they could pick up a hammer and start banging something with precision. They’re workers’ hands. And they’re ugly. The nails match. Good times.

I am also woefully lacking in the ability to dress femininely. I always miss, usually on accessories. I see girls who are all put together. Their hairs are tamed, their nails are polished and manicured, their makeup is flawless, and their clothes are pert. Not me. My hairs are wily, my nails are squat and splitty, my makeup is lipstick and sometimes some dark circle coverup, and my clothes seem thrown on at the last minute, even when I’ve attempted to look put together. I just can’t quite manage it. Maybe if I had a personal assistant and makeup artist I could do it. I suspect, however, that I would give such a person fits.  She would follow me around rolling her eyes, doing her best to remake what I had undone.  Such an assistant would need to be the sort who likes to watch her work destroyed and making attempts at rebuilding.  I would be a good project for someone like that.  If I were famous, People Magazine would have a field day with me. I’d be the constant go to girl for hideous shots of stars looking pitiful. Even better, they could use me in the See, they’re just like US! section of Us Magazine.  She gets toilet tissue stuck to her shoe!  She spills gravy on the front of her blouse!  She forgot to zip up her fly!  She drops her groceries, keys, and purse then flails mightily to recover them! They’d love me. They would never run out of fodder.

Since typing this, I’ve managed to worry down the nail split somewhat. It’s raggedy and needs a file, but it’s better than it was when I began. It’s hopeless–I’ll never be a model of western femininity. I couldn’t do it if I tried.

Filtered

A friend of mine called me about this blog.  She read it and saw today there is a password protected post.  I told her there are a few.  She wondered why.  I told her it is because there are some things I need to write but cannot share with anyone. She laughed, surprised I had a filter, considering some of what I’ve written and shared.  Ah yes…it seems I share so much, but some of me remains hidden.  Part of me is not for consumption, the secret place in my head. I have to write about some things, to work them out for myself, but I do not want to share them.  Maybe someday when some of it isn’t so fresh, I will remove the password, but by then the post will be so far back no one will read it anyway.  Perhaps even I will have forgotten it was written.  For now, however, I am filtered.  in a tiny way, I have to do this.  The writer needs the expression; the person needs the cloak.

Inconsequential Blabbing

Well I managed to move out of the house I owned and rebuilt over the course of four and a half years.  You know, the first time I received an offer, tears formed in my eyes, but I knew it had to be done and moved forward.  Then that sale fell through, then the second sale fell through, and by the time of the third sale, I was so sick of the entire process, I never thought I’d be rid of the place.  During the sale that actually went through, there were numerous requests and addendums and all kinds of annoying crap that went on.  In addition, I had rented an apartment and begun moving stuff there I wanted to keep.  I needed to organize the stuff I did not want to keep in order to have a sale and get rid of it all.  During that week, I got to the point where I was so sick of it all, I didn’t care anymore.  I just wanted the process to be over.  When I finally visited the house for the last time to pick up my dogs and run a vacuum through the place, I felt nothing really except relief.  On the day the sale closed, I went over to meet the buyers and show them some stuff about the place.  I walked through showing them all the details, seeing this house I had lived in and loved, and felt no remorse or sadness of any sort.  I guess it was time to move on.  I made the house beautiful.  I am glad someone else will enjoy something to which I contributed.

I do not like the fourth of July.  I do not like fireworks. I do not like crowds of people, even if they are gathered together to listen to somewhat decent music.  We went down to the blues festival on the waterfront yesterday.  We walked back and forth through the incredibly dense crowds (so dense the fire marshall closed the place and only 10 people could enter for every 20 who left).  At one point we were at one end of the park and headed down to one of the stages.  As we walked, I noticed all the people sitting on their blankets facing the water.  There was a stage to their left and a stage to their right.  I wondered to myself why they were facing the water and surmised that perhaps it was to listen to both stages.  Then it dawned on me, genius that I am, that the people were there and facing the water to watch the pretty fires in the sky at dark.  Thousands of people were all mashed into that small space, smelling and rolling and milling about so they could spend a half an hour watching noisy fires in the sky.  My goodness.

I bought a Macbook.  I am typing on it now.  I am in love with it.  I like my desktop computer all right.  It serves its purpose.  But this thing is cool. It has so many features and runs so smoothly.  I am loving the steps that are left out.  On a pc, there are so many extra steps to arriving anywhere compared to this.  I also got an ipod.  I had one last year, but had to give it back to the ex-boyfriend who gave it to me.  Lucky Lara, welcome to the twenty-first century.

So now I have a little extra money, but I need for it to last.  I had a mini panic attack this morning considering all the things I am going to need to spend money on in the next few weeks.  I do not want the money to all end up gone.  The weird thing is, the more I have, the less inclined I am to want to spend it.  But I can be remarkably frugal (Macbook and Ipod notwithstanding).  I just have to pay attention.

This is a boring post.  I realized I had not been writing enough.  I have been staying up too late, and when I’m not working or doing things, I’ve been lying on my bed like a blob trying to catch up on sleep.  I recognize, however, that I have to write something, even if it’s boring, preferably every day.  It’s that old showing up I’ve committed to myself to do.  Since I’ve written less in the last two weeks then I’ve written in the last six months, I’ve got to recommit or I’ll end up out of the habit and I can’t do that.  So here I am, showing up and writing boring stuff.  Wheee!

I discovered Nina Simone.  I am in love.  Her voice gets under my skin, in my belly, fills me. I can’t explain it.  I hear her singing and I never want to turn it off.  Apparently she was a classically trained pianist who was not allowed to perform because she was black.  They let her sing instead.  Maybe it’s something behind that story I hear in her voice. Maybe it’s the grief of an entire race.  When she sings certain songs I feel something deep inside, a visceral response in my belly and chest.  There are a few other artists when theys sing that take me to that place.  When I hear music like this I feel like it channels me into that creative energy field, that primal place where I have to write and feel like I will expire if I don’t.  Weird.  I don’t think I’m explaining it well. I’m obviously not tapping into that place right now because I can’t seem to describe this.  Anyway, she’s brilliant.