Sunday Morning, Rain Is Falling

Sunday evening.  Close enough.

I don’t like the holidays.  I get grumpy, fidgety, and depressed.  Here are some highlights (lowlights?) from a late-December weekend.

At the coffee place, yesterday:

I had earbuds in, because of the Christmas music (holiday thesis statement:  I hate Christmas).  There was an unsupervised small person next to me, and he asked what I was listening to.

Me:  Velvet Underground.

Him:  Is that the name of the song?

Me:  No, the song is called “Venus in Furs.”

Him:  What’s it about?

Me:  Love.

And no, I don’t have children.  And I’m not ever around them.  So don’t call DSS.

I can tell it’s getting really close to the dreaded 25th because my anxiety is through the roof (more than usual).  I had a substantial freakout yesterday that resulted in frantic texting, mostly to assure me that I had not ruined my life forever and always.  Apologies again to the person on the receiving end of that one.

It’s not all my typical anxiety, which tends to come from overanalyzing everything.  And everything else.

Both bulbs in my bedroom burned out, which I put off dealing with as long as possible:  I decided to fix it, finally, when I was squinting in the semi-darkness this morning, trying to determine if I was holding the navy tights with stars or the black ones.  For future reference, the navy ones have the small stars, and the black ones have larger stars.  And I changed my mind and didn’t wear either pair, in the end.

That was just trying to get out of the house.

So I wisely waited until after nightfall to change the bulbs, because darkness is the ideal way to attempt that.  I dragged a kitchen chair into the bedroom and finally got the fixture down.  When I got the box of bulbs, there was only one of the correct wattage.  I have a box of four bulbs of a different wattage, but having non-identical lightbulbs hovering over my head would effectively blow my mind.  So I changed one bulb.


One is the loneliest number.

See also:  previous post about the so-called Minute Rice, which I ended up giving away.

When washing dishes, wash dishes.

Or, alternatively, brood!  This is where “Sunday Morning” comes in.  I was thinking through the lyrics and trying to decide if that or “Heroin” is the most depressing song on that album.  I unfairly created a tie by designating the latter the most overtly depressing and the former the most subtly depressing.

I tried to pep myself up with John Prine, but I gave up midway through “Sam Stone.”  In retrospect, probably not the best pick, either.

This picture, taken while visiting my parents, sums up how I feel:


Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life.



The Smiths and a Grump Walk into a Coffeehouse 

I jumped ship Sunday afternoon and went to my favorite local coffee place.  I was getting cabin fever but had rough luck renegotiating my exercise contract last week (current status:  SIT.  STAY.), and it sounded like it was about to be aerobics time* upstairs.

*Unlike some of my more obvious flights of fancy, I do think that one is accurate; in college one year, there was an aerobics enthusiast in the dorm room above, so I’ve heard this one before.  Me picturing the full-on ’80s Jane Fonda setup is complete projection, admittedly. 

Post image is Starbucks– not the coffeehouse. I’ve undertaken guerilla lyrics-doodling. Yeah, yeah:  get a life. 

One reason I like this particular coffee place is that they generally play good music (read:  music I like) at the perfect volume:  audible, but right at that level where it drowns out nearby conversation without preventing you from reading (or whatever), even though the seating is tight.

Accordingly, I’d gone armed with my current book (A Light that Never Goes Out:  The Enduring Saga of The Smiths, the follow-up to Girls to the Front:  The True Story of the Riot Grrrl Revolution; I’m on some sort of music roll).  I incidentally thought that brooding behind a book that prominently featured the famous disaffected Manchester group might scream “over here!  Single!” without actually having to sing “How Soon Is Now?,” but perhaps Morrissey sends the wrong message . . . . Also, I tend to forget I’m old.  Really, really, super-old.


Credit: Kaineiribas, DeviantArt:

Credit: Kaineiribas, DeviantArt:

I sat down next to a guy affixed to his computer who, oddly, tapped his headphones when I sat.  The Unstated Coffee House Code of Conduct generally forbids that sort of thing, so I was puzzled, and I had no idea what was particularly of interest about his headphones.

I found out pretty quickly.

I can normally tune people out when I’m reading, and, as I said, the music generally is a good cover here.  Maybe it was the pitch of this girl’s voice?  Only the scientists who hunt her down and trap her for further study will have the answers.

Here’s a sampling of what I learned in the short period of time that preceded putting my headphones in (sitting down –> waiting for my order to be called):

*Religion is not the same as spirituality.  Religion is Baptist.

*Saddam Hussein was/is President of Iraq.

*America is not the world police.  (cue me mentally humming Team America theme song)

*Her parents are worried that she is a spinster.  She’s almost 24 already!

*She can take care of a dog, so she is totally ready to start having babies!

*Her parents are worried about her brother-in-law because he hasn’t produced any children yet.  (No, I didn’t understand, either.)

All attempts at further socialization went into the toilet once I hunkered down with coffee, as that’s when my headphones went in.  At first, it was something about the tone of her voice that made her hard to tune out, just on an aural level.  Then it was these– aphorisms?– that kept coming at her companion (and everyone else in the vicinity) that turned into can’t-turn-away utterances.

It was headphones or live-tweeting, and I figured no one could miss me doing the second.  Also, I can’t type that fast.  Or read while live-tweeting, which would defeat the whole purpose of coming to get a quiet cup of coffee in the first place.

I get the feeling it might be a problem.

I get the feeling it might be a problem.

In the end, The Smiths [book] and I had coffee with The Smiths [music].  Party of three, alienated and with a thorn in our side.

Unnecessary bit at the end, by way of seriously lightweight book reviewing:  The review of the book I’m reading now (A Light that Never Goes Out) is accurate; the book is full of information, but the pacing is sluggish, and Fletcher is no writer.  I’m on page 161, and the band hasn’t even formed.  For every great quotation or musical reference, there are pages of so much detail that I end up flipping back.  Clearly, I haven’t read enough to say much more than that.

Girls to the Front, by contrast, is practically page-turning, and it’s interesting that both books cover limited spans of music-time (a briefly-lived band, a briefly-lived movement).  Marcus clearly also did serious and exhaustive research, but she doesn’t exhaust the reader with the weight of it.  If you’re interested in early Riot Grrrl, this is a good one.  As this review acknowledges, the only real thing of note is that she sometimes lets people and the issues that divided them off slightly more easily than they may have deserved.  There’s generally enough context that you can spot these points yourself, though.  

If you just (like me) read Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl, this is a good time to pull this one off the bookshelf (where it may have happened to have been sitting for far too long) (cough).  My review of that one is on LibraryThing and Goodreads, for what little that’s worth.

Play a Song for Me: Radio Revisited

Long story, but I currently have satellite radio in my car– something I thought I’d never enjoy and didn’t really see the point of.  One station, dedicated to one thing, all the time?  Boring.

I stand corrected, at least in my case, and stand before you an E Street Radio addict.  It’s surprisingly mentally healthy to get in the car and know– with 100% certainty– that whatever is playing is something you will like, it will be commercial-free, and that, if there’s commentary, it’s going to be people who are foaming-at-the-mouth enthusiastic and not afraid to hide that behind jaded coolness.  

In the short time I’ve had this, Bruce Springsteen has considerably improved my day on quite a few occasions (no, I’m not embarrassed to say that).  I was making a longish drive home yesterday– on a road I hate (bad directions, GPS)– and the low tire light flashed on.  My own gauge is dead, and there wasn’t a tire place to be seen, so I was just trying to make it home and hoping for the best:  then a cover of “Stayin’ Alive” came on.  Thank you, radio tarot!

This was playing as I entered the city that's not actually my hometown but is sort of close.  And yes, I know that the lyrics don't match the title, but you can't tell me that KARMA/GOD/BRUCE WASN'T SENDING ME A MESSAGE.

This was playing as I entered the city that’s not actually my hometown but is sort of close to it. And yes, I know that the lyrics don’t match the title, but you can’t tell me that KARMA/GOD/BRUCE WASN’T SENDING ME A MESSAGE.

I have radio on the mind at the moment; music in general often is, but it’s specifically radio at the moment.  #1 is that I was particularly grateful for satellite radio yesterday.  #2 is that, as of 3:38 AM last night (morning?), I was lying completely under the covers, wearing cans and listening to one of my multi-multi-hour playlists, thanks to the roller derby/mud wrestling/whatever upstairs.  If, from #2, you deduced I was pretty awake at the time, you are correct; that’s when I started thinking about satellite radio stations that could theoretically exist for extreme niche audiences.

And yes, I realize the Hedy Lamarr image really isn’t technically correct for satellite radio, but I’m just going with radio communications in general.

Here’s the segue:  early AM insomnia-meets-noisy-neighbor ideas!

(disclaimer:  I could have sworn I jotted some of these down, but the only list I see begins “peppers, shredded cheese,” so I’m not sure what’s going on with that)

I Have an Opinion about the Internet

Okay.  Never read below the line, right?  Maybe we could put this on a call-in show an delete the comments section from news articles (etc.) entirely.  Wouldn’t that improve your internet experience?  I’m thinking this one could be isolated somewhere in the high, high numbers.  Maybe an opt-in.

This is the first article that appeared in my Facebook feed at this moment.  I’ve deleted the candidate’s name, because it could really apply to any potential nominee (and has probably been said about all of them):  “[person]’s is spoon fed by Wallstreet criminals.”  It’s not clear what that candidate’s what is being spoon fed by, in case you think I’ve taken away too much context.

(see also:  Moff’s Law, for how to handle this better– but why it usually doesn’t work.)

Lather, rinse, repeat about . . . anything.

Stolen from the internet at some point, but it really says all that needs to be said.

Stolen from the internet at some point, but it really says all that needs to be said.

Spoiler Radio

Does anyone besides my next-door neighbor have a television with cable?  And, as far as I can tell through the wall, he watches mainly wrestling and SNL reruns– no network dramas.

Because everyone is waiting for an entire season of X to hit Netflix, the entire internet population (including me) starts screaming “no spoilers!” as soon as it does.  The result is that people who have finished a season of X are dying to talk about the finale of whatever it was but aren’t clear when it’s acceptable to do so.

So:  spoiler radio.  Maybe an hour of programming devoted to each show?  Callers must have finished viewing the entire episode/season.  Fandom can speak freely about whatever the pressing issue without fear of ruining it for anyone.

N.B.:  I’ve already seen all of Orphan Black, season 3, which isn’t on Netflix yet.  TALK TO ME.

*keeps mouth shut, with difficulty, which is obviously very, very hard*

*keeps mouth shut, with difficulty, which is obviously very, very hard*

“This One Time”

Do you have a really good random story that is pretty much impossible to work into conversation?  But you really want to tell it?  There’s a radio station for that.

Forget disrupting conversational flow, because this station doesn’t have it.  Just call and plunge right in:  “This one time, see, we had all this red Kool-Aid mixed up– okay, that’s another story– but anyway . . . .”

And then you can return from the patio, smile politely at your host, and get back to discussing work politics.  Or whatever civilized people do.  I really don’t know, myself.  I’d go ahead and tell the Kool-Aid story, which is why I need this station.

Shockingly, sometime after I took this picture in Target, these PJs found their way to me.

Shockingly, sometime after I took this picture in Target, these PJs found their way to me.

Unpopular Opinion Channel

Oh, yeah, this was one I thought of last night.  Remembered it right now because I have headphones in (again, same reason; it’s either Stomp or Riverdance right now), and I’m listening to one of my favorite Queen songs:  “I Was Born to Love You.”

There is no shame here.  Clearly.

Anyway, the Unpopular Opinion station is where you can call in and anonymously admit that you like whatever is going to get you called out on the internet/Twitter/social media.  Or you can just say on the forum of your choosing (in a non-abrasive way) that you like whatever it is and let people deal.

Perth Amboy Station

I’ve mentioned how I use Perth Amboy repeatedly:  it’s a stopgap term for whatever I’m trying to come up with, can’t remember, but will definitely remember at 3 AM.  Whatever it is, it’s something that’s missing too many variables to Google.

So, for a good night’s sleep, call the Perth Amboy station and ramble about how you read this novel where someone loses a Phi Beta Kappa pin, and it may have been his father’s, but you’re not sure, and you’re pretty sure it’s 20th century and Southern.*  Callers who have the same syndrome call in and offer the assistance that Google can’t.

*Seriously, I’m really pretty sure I read this, but I can’t figure it out.

My headphones are now doing that fried-wire thing they do when you’ve mangled them from overuse.  I’m sending the bill upstairs.

Another true story of being out of touch:  I’m using earbuds right now (the ones that seem to be fried and are currently distorting Chuck Berry), but, last year, I thought maybe I could replace them with another set of the big ones, which are so old I don’t even remember where they came from.  I kept hearing about Beats, so I finally looked them up:  if they’re so nice, they must cost about $20, right?

No.  Not right at all.  Did not replace.

I’m to Chicken to Put This on Craigslist

Okay, last one.  This one is clearly pretty personal, and I’m just going to leave it here, since it’s obviously autobiographical.  I think it would belong in the missed connections: m4w.

Dear dude in beanie who catcalled me as I was walking home,

First of all, I’m not even going to pretend to myself it was a compliment.  The guy driving was speeding, and there’s no way you saw anything about what I look like.  Probably what registered was that I was wearing a dress, and that was sufficient.  Please mention to the driver that he shouldn’t speed there; there’s a playground there, and there are kids on it during the week and on Sundays.  More than the catcalling, it makes me mad that you were speeding where children might duck into the street.

Moving on.  I don’t frequent the m4w section because . . . we’ll save that for another time.  But, if you found the brief glimpse of this ancient Old Navy dress so tantalizing, perhaps we should get better acquainted.  See, when you said whatever it was you said– and I didn’t catch a word of it, so I’m just going to interpret for myself– I was thinking about what I needed to do when I got home.  Cleaning, specifically.

The dishes are clean, and I did a pretty bang-up job on all the floors last week, if I do say so myself, but the bathroom is due for one of those good scrubs.  It’s tiny and has no ventilation, so I don’t like doing that (eau de mix of tons of chemicals).  I think we could really get to know each other if you stayed here and got that really sparkling clean while I go get a nice coffee and read (Apocalypse Baby— if you read it, too, we’ll talk book club– that’s the next level!).

Let me know when you’re done.  And gone.  Oh, and you might want to bring headphones.  Unwelcome noise is surprisingly annoying.

One Request Before I Go, DJ!

No point, as usual.  I need a coda, and I love this song/live version.

Window Shopping through the Past (Apologies to John Prine)

I am very, very bad at doing any kind of meditating, relaxation exercise, guided imagery– all of that.  I mostly close my eyes (redacted:  I look at my lap, because I don’t really like to close my eyes) and drift for the required period.

While doing– er, not doing– guided imagery this week, I realized what might help (more than guided imagery) was writing something.  Guided imagery tends to freak me out, but I really don’t have a problem with acting like an idiot on the internet.  Happy sailors dancing on a sinking ship, indeed– but I’m just recording the laughs here.

I have a couple half-baked posts in draft about past stuff, but most are shelved, because I thought they were corny.  Instead, here in review, are various poor* role models I have chosen/idolized/fixated on at one time or another:

*Please interpret “poor” loosely/ironically; some have good qualities that I’m going to neglect to mention.

The feature image is the mouse that lives in a corner of my kitchen, Doctor De Soto (see the children’s book).  I suspect that most children who loved this one also grew up to be vegetarian, animal-loving, bleeding-heart liberals, but I don’t know if that’s been studied.  At any rate, he’s pictured as an example of an acceptable role model.

Another reason I’ve thought of this some lately:  LinkedIn has some section (that I’ve never used) where you can list inspirational figures or something like that.  Because I’m me, I keep thinking how much fun I could have with that section:  why, yes, I do think that Emma Goldman is quite inspirational, thank you for asking!  Oh, the door is that way?  I’ll wait for your call!

Moving on.


She was an early one, and I here claim extraordinary sketchy source material:  a very gossipy and old book about the kings and queens of England that I’d found at home yea, a long time ago.  The book (long since out of print) is written chronologically backward:  it begins with the current queen and works its way backward, and, as I later realized, got sketchier in the veracity department as it worked it way back.  However, what it lacked in fact, it more than made up for in salacious detail, which is probably why I liked Boadicea for the butt-kicking warrior she was (and, according to the book, buried in what is now King’s Cross station).  Women leading uprisings:  good stuff!  The book must have glossed over the whole defeat bit.

Carson McCullers Characters, Inclusive

Behold, the original text!

Behold, the original text!

Sometime– I guess in early junior high?– I read The Ballad of the Sad Café for the first time.  I remember rushing outside to tell my mother that Carson McCullers was definitely the only person in the world who really got me.  I was not institutionalized, sent to therapy, or told to go soak my head/get some fresh air.  I’m grateful for that:  free-range reading parenting.  Pre-Netflix, this lead to Carson McCullers binge reading.  That might explain a lot . . .

From that book, just because it’s seasonal (also:  true/apt):  “There is no stillness like the quiet of the first cold nights in the fall.”

Glass Family, Inclusive

Now might be a good time to mention, re:  reading everything in the house I could hoover up, that my mother has later said that maybe she should have shelved by height:  put some books up high enough so that I couldn’t reach them until I had passed certain formative years.  Pretty sure she’d want me to mention that (it comes up a lot with Hardy and Dostoevsky).

Of course I wasn’t just obsessed with Salinger’s Glass family; I wanted to be one of them.  Look at how brilliant!  How special!  How sensitive!  How unique!  Yes, there was some missing-of-the-point happening.

I miss MTV cartoons.  Does MTV still have cartoons?

I miss MTV cartoons. Does MTV still have cartoons?  Oh, add her to the list.

I can’t remember for certain which book this is in, but, in one of them, it’s mentioned how Seymour put a wooden board behind a door that they covered with (brilliant, etc.) quotations from books.  I may or may not have become fixated enough with that one to replicate the effect with index cards blu-tacked behind my bedroom door.

A Certain Hillbilly Deluxe

This one is probably still current.  And I did appear on local news when he came to town:  a reporter went down the line of people waiting (outside the chainlink fence of the dirt lot) to get into the concert to assess our relative excitement to see Dwight Yoakam.  I really, really hope my family is still proud.

This heart of stone / Sure is missing you . . .

Present day:  my original Gone CD from 1995, which I listened to almost 200 times in the first five days I had it.  That’s another story.  I can be a little obsessive about proper treatment of CDs.

The X-Files

This is either A) a quirky picture or B) a general representation of me being too lazy to brush my hair and put on something other than a tank top.  In other words, you're welcome.

This is either A) a quirky picture or B) a general representation of me being too lazy to brush my hair and put on something other than a tank top and the “don’t go outside” skirt. In other words, you’re welcome.

I’ve been saying for, um, a long time that I like to hold an hour-long silent vigil at 9 PM on Fridays and on Sundays.

The problem, though, was that the show gave you too many choices:  good or evil?  FBI agent?  Lone Gun(person)?  (<– probably really my choice)  Double agent?

This show was nine seasons of a lot of what I’m talking about here:  a reality release valve.  Plotlines that allow you to inject yourself in them are a good place to huddle when you need a hobbit hole.

Incidentally, and I hope I’m working this plug in as smoothly as possible, there is an excellent new novel about real reality colliding with imaginary reality (that was the most horrible summary ever; you’re welcome, and now read it so you can do better, but it’s after 2 AM, so sue me):  Weird Girl and What’s His Name.

Dorothy Parker

I knew her quips and poetry first, then her stories, then, finally, I read a biography.  If you do it in that order, it gets pretty progressively depressing.  If you just know about the Algonquin Round Table time period, though, it sounds like a pretty ideal life.  Again, the teenage interpretation of this was that she pretty much made a living by being a smartass– clearly, I’d missed the real bite of the poems.  That seemed like good work if you could get it.

I took the biography on a vacation (to the beach– I believe I’ve mentioned I’m not good at vacations?).  I clearly remember that illusion getting shattered; this was probably sometime near the end of junior high or beginning of high school.

Reality is just plain one big disillusionment after another.  It never stops happening, either, unless you’re wearing blinders.


Yep.  And add her to the list of role models.

Quentin, Pig, Seymour, Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, Phil Ochs, & I Imagine You Can Keep Going with This

I was gloomy and, amazingly, the first!  ever!  teenager to discover that I was most definitely alienated, disaffected, and misunderstood.  It had to happen to somebody, sometime, right?

I take medication now.

And I bet if I showed anyone this blog, that dose would go right on up.

Please do not report me to the psychiatric fuzz ™.  <—- I’m trademarking that, okay?

Taylor Swift


Sorry.  The devil made me do it.

Conversation with my brother:

Me:  (Explaining how, until a few weeks ago, I thought the album was called 1984— in homage to Orwell– not 1989— and, yes, I am being serious)

Him:  “Sorry, when you said ‘Taylor Swift,’ I stopped listening.”

Yes, I’m making fun of us.

Various and Sundry Existentialists

Gonna have to plead the fifth.

Sadly, not my own work.

Sadly, not my own work.

Now I’m Going to Talk about My Cat

I could keep going.  Probably the best role model I could choose would be Alice.  When most people mention living like a cat, they mean getting their way, pushing people around, being aloof, all that.  Alice, probably because she doesn’t think she’s a cat, isn’t like that:  she gets upset when I’m upset.  She tries to cheer me up.  If she is upset about something, she’s over it and back to her usual sunny self in about two minutes, tops (she hasn’t forgotten; she’s just moved on).  She likes to play with people, but she can also entertain herself.  She seems to understand the concept of moderation (cough) just fine.

Also, she’s cute.  With a face like this, you can get a free pass on a lot, anyway:

Recent inbox arrival:  she normally doesn't perch here, but she's protesting the invasion of people doing various household repairs.

Recent inbox arrival: she normally doesn’t perch here, but she’s protesting the invasion of people doing various household repairs.

~Tidy Conclusion~

I doubt having questionable role models really hurt me in the long run.  And I’ve been using the phrase “role models” loosely all along, as you may have noticed:  these people/characters were variously fixations, people I admired for one reason or another, or simply people I liked for no really explicable reason.  Again, no one told me to get a grip, and I just moved along– see, for instance, being fascinated enough with Dorothy Parker’s writing that I tracked down a biography and filled in the rest of the story.

And yes, I realize I’m no poster child for mental stability.  However, anyone who claims that they are is probably (definitely) lying.  I’m just throwing open the door on some various mental skeletons here.  In other words:  “Sure, I made it, but you know it was a hell of a trip.”

I still may add some of these to LinkedIn.  Depends on what degree of insomnia I reach, probably.

I feel like I’m trailing off here, so I’m just going to post the new LP single, which is really not at all relevant to anything.  But it’s good.  In my really super-informed opinion and all that.

I Wish It Would(n’t) Rain

First of all:  YAY, I went away for the weekend!  Sorry.  I’m very excited.  We can argue about the meaning of “vacation” all day, but I’m counting this.  So there.

Also, before I move into quasi-content:  vote on the 2016 Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.  I can’t actually buy your votes, but why aren’t more of you voting for The Smiths?  I’m not even talking about music here.  I’m talking about how this would somehow involve trying to figure out how to get Morrissey and Marr on the same stage.  Or in the same building.  At the very least, it would be a very, very exciting year for this ceremony.

Also, to go ahead and get this out of the way, I was going to quote something from Furiously Happy at the end (I did anyway).  When I flipped to find it, I realized I had inadvertently written something pretty much along the same lines thematically as the Australia chapter of that book (except not clever, funny, etc.).  That was probably part accident and part some sort of back-of-mind recall.  In my defense, that was the first book I’d been able to complete since August, owing to a mental crash-and-burn (which I’ll say again, but that’s due to no current external circumstance; I get paranoid about that sort of thing re: myself, so I feel like I need to say it), so I’m still getting the pieces picked up.  It’s also after 2 AM.

Photos Go Awry . . . Before I Even Leave Town

I had a nice little plan set up, which is probably when the universe decided to heave buckets of rain down.  See, I was anticipating one of those photo albums of mountain-type fall pictures to show (read:  prove) that I’d been outdoors and all that stuff that I hear other people do.

I’m already taking weird pictures to demonstrate I do normal things.  I realize other people Instagram fascinating meals and exquisite culinary preparations.  I took a picture of this . . . whatever I made last week:

WHOEVER is currently in charge of the kitchen on OITNB (because I lost focus so many times last season, except when some favorite character was disappearing) will now have to relinquish it to me.

WHOEVER is currently in charge of the kitchen on OITNB (because I lost focus so many times last season, except when some favorite character was disappearing) will now have to relinquish it to me.

Technically, I sort of used a recipe.  More importantly, EXCHANGES.

Oh, I did take a picture of coffee last week.  This reminds me of a chromosome pair I saw once in a photo, but I haven’t figured it out yet.  Let me know if you recognize it.

Requisite coffee photo of vaguely biological looking splotch.

Requisite coffee photo of vaguely biological looking splotch.

“He Says They’ve Already Got One!”

Anyway, that’s why I wanted some more impressive pictures.  Most of the ones I take around here are of garbage and other street debris.  Seriously.  Tons of those.

However, the weird-person-staring-at-street problem could be remedied, if I could have taken home my new friend, the Trojan Moose:

Calling him/her/whatever Bullwinkle seems very obvious.

Calling him/her/whatever Bullwinkle seems very obvious.  Please note that it is really raining indeed.

I also grew attached to a kindred cow and pig inside (not so much the raccoon; I was afraid it would go through my kitchen trash).  I’m not sure if I could have also remained in this apartment if all three had come home (and how I would have gotten them here), but it would have been lovely to have them around.

Apple:  Now Bringing U2 to All Devices

This is in a parking garage elevator.  Some enterprising soul made it picture-worthy.  It may be that I don’t have a great concept of what constitutes vacation picture material:

Good one, Banksy-in-training.

Good one, Banksy-in-training.

I think I did better with the yarn-bombed bike.  Of course, A) taking a close picture while B) not walking away might have helped.  I was distracted.  There were also things up ahead.  So sue me.

I just want to ride my motorsickle. Stop fighting me on this one, autocorrect.

I just want to ride my motorsickle. Stop fighting me here, autocorrect.  It’s a word if Arlo Guthrie says it is.

The Ballad of the . . . Well, Not Sad Anything, Really

What else have I got?  Here’s a house I saw that was falling apart and looked cool:

#lifegoals: be known as the creepy old woman who lives here in a distinctly Southern Gothic manner

#lifegoals: be known as the creepy old woman who lives here in a distinctly Southern Gothic manner

There was a version of that one that had me standing in front of it.  It does not appear here.  No pictures of me will be in this post.  The vacation was good, but I certainly don’t like the way I seemed to look in it.  This has been a message from the voices in my head.

Other assorted buildings:

Roofs! Tiles!

Roofs! Tiles!

Some sort of really interesting church!

Some sort of really interesting church!

No idea, but I stalled everyone on the sidewalk to take a picture because it was interesting.

No idea, but I stalled everyone on the sidewalk to take a picture because it was interesting.  I have even made it larger here, for your viewing pleasure.

Classy ™ Starbucks ™.

Classy ™ Starbucks ™.

“Sweeping Every Category Except Congeniality, Which Is Not Something the Women in My Family Aspire to, Anyway”

There’s some other stuff, but I’m not going to deluge anyone with a slideshow.  What I am going to say is that the past five or so days have been a lot better than some other recent ones, not for any reason relating to external circumstances (read:  no one’s fault, etc.).  I already put in a brief plug for Furiously Happy [link to blog; it may cheer you up] in the previous post, and I’m going to do it again here.

Here’s why:  most people would probably think I had a boring vacation, and I certainly don’t have a lot of wild ‘n’ crazy pictures to show.  Everything I did (well, except for the getting soaked bit) was something I like to do, though.  I probably went too slow for most people.  I probably took more naps.  Lord knows I had a more “interesting” eating schedule.  I also veer off sidewalks to look at strange things, duck into oddball shops where I will buy nothing, and pretty much set up shop in bookstores.  I even like old bricks.  A lot.  And if none of that is your thing, that’s also fine.

Here’s where I’m going to stop babbling and quote the book:  “It doesn’t mean I’m a failure at appreciating the good things in life.  It means I’m successful at recognizing what the good things in life are for me.”

“Better to Light a Flamethrower than Curse the Darkness”

I would absolutely not say I deserved any of this weekend, but it was such a wonderful relief to have five days where I felt like a human instead of a mole person.  When I try to tell people what the “good things” I’ve done or experienced are, I feel pretty paltry and want to fade away again.  So tonight I’m not caring about that part.  I’m going to bask in the feeling of not feeling like crawling back in bed and staying there.

Is this a picture of someone on a good day or a bad day? You decide.

Is this a picture of someone having a good day or a bad day? You decide.

And I also really want to thank [this sounds like a speech.  I should sleep.  I’ll be doing a pageant wave next] a few of you who helped me keep this up these past few days, especially since I’ve been so bad about hiding from, um, everything. Also the person who told me to quit shading everything on social media (none of it’s a lie, incidentally; it’s finely-presented truth) so that things look like they’re going fine until I end up in some train wreck situation (this isn’t social media per se, so those who never want to read this blathering will simply be able to ignore it).

I’m going to try to return the favor and be better about responding.  I will try to answer. I’m working on it.  I may be asleep or have the phone off at some times.  Otherwise, I’m  trying.

Finis, in the usual manner: