Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Hodiernus Dies

“I can’t wait for fall,” she says. So does the cute meme picture on Facebook from that one group that loves walking through crunchy leaves. I love this. I love it when people have an appreciation for seasons that aren’t warm. I love stand collar pull-overs, track jackets, pea coats, red wine warming me from the inside out and flushing my cheeks, the fire roaring in the woodstove and its coals as it calms down from its initial, hungry tantrum. I love the chill in the air, the leaves turning the color of the inside of pirate’s treasure chests, and shuffling-walking-dancing balboa through the red-gold crinkle and tinkle of the sound of glass breaking without the destruction or pain.

“I’m ready for fall,” someone says. On one hand, a smile tucks itself into the corner of my mouth. On the other, my brow crinkles. I love autumn and winter, spring is nice, and summer, when it’s not too hot, is glorious. Today is summer though, and as much as my love for the ephemeral smiles in anticipation of leaves beneath my dancing feet, it loves the todayness of this August 28th. (And realize right this moment I’ll be 31 in exactly three months. Where did the year go? But that’s not today. That’s 31, three months from now.)

Fall is coming, but I’m ready for today. And tomorrow, and the next day. Summer, with summer suns and skies and storms. Sunsets and rises behind clouds and a star that seems determined to show off its rays this season. I don’t remember a year when they were as visible as frequently as they have been the last couple weeks. It’s beautiful, and I’m content with being here, now, today. I am happy with the flip flops and my brand new Vibram toe shoes that are, quite honestly, like hugs for my feet. Feet that needed hugs. Are they ugly? Probably, but at this point in my health, that’s okay.

When the weather turns, and eventually forces my frozen toes back into socks and shoes that protect them from the elements, I will be ready for that too. I’m ready for fall, but not in that “I’m not satisfied with what I have kind of way.” I’m ready for fall like I’m ready for rain, or sun, or snow, or cold, or heat. I’m ready for whatever the day brings. I’m ready for today, in this season, and any day. This is the day I’m in. This is the age I am. Today is the world I have and I’m going to seize it. This particular one I’m going to seize gentle, more of a cradle, really, and snuggle up comfortably to it with a contented sigh, as though it were a pillow. That’s the kind of today I’m feeling. Nugglesay Diem. Snuggle the day.

I’d love to hear someone say, just once, “I love pea coats and hot chocolate. But today is good too.”

Today is a reason for living.
-Our Lady Peace


Friday, August 23, 2013


And this will be known as the summer I barely wrote.

Paradoxically, the quote of the summer is:
“So avoid using the word ‘very’ because it’s lazy. A man is not very tired, he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose. Language was invented for one reason, boys - to woo women - and, in that endeavor, laziness will not do. It also won’t do in your essays.”

Of course, barely writing to me includes thousands of words saved, and thousands left to sift into the oubliette of my text message trash so that it will stop telling me the inbox is 80% full. Words I don’t care about because they were written in haste or to chat, or to tease and delight but not linger.

The meat of it, however, the sustenance of writing has escaped to play on green-blue-brown waters of lake Pend Oreille, hike through the shallow running current of the Pack River, and dive deep into the virtual worlds of science fiction and fantasy novels and video games. The bones have been buried under nearly continental workloads and only recently begun to surface. Only today have I begun to really begin to engage in a bit of archaeology, unearthing earlier writings and finding the muse to gather new thoughts.

My book remains unfinished, not yet ready to collect imaginary dust or dog ears as it sits on the virtual shelves next to a thousand other Kindle writers. What a time to be a writer! I write a page here, a page there. With my other goals achieved, I have set the completion of The West Wind as one of my next goals. Its time will come.

I dived into the open arms of the dating game again, and such a curious game it is. For my first adventure after more than a year of celibacy, I went on a date with a former student who is now a widow after less than a year of marriage. Our first, and last, date was the week before their first anniversary would have taken place. Somehow, I am not surprised that a second opportunity did not present itself. Perhaps it might have gone differently if she had shared her story instead of letting me discover it on Facebok. The topic never came up.

My second adventure has proven the most fruitful, yet the most outside my comfort zone and while not concluded, is nearing one. I have been enjoying the company of a single mother who lives an hour and a half away every other weekend and is outside of my usual physical type. While there is chemistry and she is good company, it is not emotional chemistry and I have not developed the beginnings of feelings for her. I always feel like our time spent together is an escape from her reality and responsibilities. That isn’t a complaint, but it isn’t something to build a relationship upon.

Ah, my third. . . the first date I wanted, and the last I went on. The date we had was wonderful. Good dinner, good conversation, and I have no idea why she claims she didn’t feel a spark. We went for a walk after dinner and as we walked side by side she continuously moved her hand from her side to my bicep and back. There were a few moments of natural beauty we enjoyed together, and a couple moments in which I chose not to kiss her, but could have. I felt like she expected one at the end of the date, from her body language and long embrace. I rarely kiss on the first date. Perhaps that was the spark she was missing? C’est la vie.

In the meantime, I will continue to enjoy living. I am trying to let go and enjoy myself more, worry less. I playfully call it controlled hedonism, though I’m hardly hedonistic enough for it to warrant the terminology.

Work is an intriguing mess right now. I work for an in-house advertising agency of a fairly well known women’s retailer (the company was on the Fortune 500 list once upon a time), and we have no copywriters for our catalog or retail work. We have been understaffed in that department for ages, even before the last three all left within three months. To my knowledge, we’ve had one interview for a copywriter in all that time and THAT was last week.

My own department is down one person, who moved to Montana and is working remote until my boss is tired of dealing with it. That’s the honest version. She’s working on a “temporary basis while we transition and look for a candidate to replace her.” He doesn’t like remote, and while I can see it working, it’s bad for morale. I have plenty of down time (i.e. Right this moment.) and would love to be out playing during that time instead of being stuck at my desk waiting to see what, if anything, comes my way.

For my part, I have made it clear that I’m not really interested in being a proofreader any longer. My boss apparently has plans for me, if he can ever catch up enough on the work he has to act on them. When he told me he was planning to post my former co-worker’s position I told him to post mine too and hire me to do something else. Where this is going, I don’t know. If it goes somewhere, soon, I won’t care either. I refuse to become one of the copywriters, however, but that’s certainly not in his plan. Just today a friend of mine here was introducing another employee to other departments and referred to me as being in the “proofreading department” and my boss corrected her, saying I was in “Operations”. (That’s Creative Operations.) I hope that’s a sign of things to come.

Life in general is interesting as well. A friend of mine has been living at the house while he goes through his second divorce. It is in the early stages at present and she is fighting his requests, which is to be expected. He is doing remarkably well, however. I am happy for him. This divorce may be the best thing that’s ever happened to him. His soon-to-be ex was one of the more unpleasant, toxic people I’ve met.

Mira is doing well, she had her first heat in May/June and then a false pregnancy. Apparently her body thought it was pregnant in spite of having no puppies in her womb. She was very cuddly during that time period, but has since become a puppy again. A very large, 90 lb. puppy. She last weighed in at 88 lbs. With minor exceptions, she’s still a wonderful dog and a heart thief. Almost everyone who meets her falls for her.

Sometimes I wish I was a dog. A golden retriever, maybe. Or a mastiff. Newfoundland? Life is good as a dog.
That’s enough for now. Hello, friends.

And a thousand words, goodnight.