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Gray memory
April 24, 2006

A little tired something...

Gray Memory

I want to put you back into being
put you together with water and memory
Fill the cracks in with slip,
slip you back here
As you would into the black water
As you would into the silver boat
The sound of falling
The sound of water slapping sides
The sound of the boat on the water and the water on the wood

All the pieces fall into place,
you in the boat on the water on a gray day.
All the pieces are there.
Still, still, pieces.


There are days when it seems like being alive is enough, and days when it seems important to save the world, and then there are days when it all seems like folly.

I got a job as a substitute librarian at Hennepin County, which is a great opportunity, and I am very exited about it. I also got an interview for a library job at Ramsey County, and came out high on their list of candidates, although due to the way they hire people, I have no idea if I will even be up for a job or not...

I was feeling pretty smug, I suppose. I'm not now. Now I'm tired.

Our vacation up north just came and went, and I miss my Grandma very much. Her absence was a very strong force in our family together time. I visited the memorial site we made for Gma and Gpa just for a brief minute, but it made me wish them back very strongly.

And now this other thing...the face to face reality that death doesn't just come and broadside you and then go away, but is in a constant tug of war with life. It doesn't seem fair--just when I start to feel equilibrium again, that skeletal hand reaches up and grabs an ankle. Well, it doesn't have a complete hold yet. We'll find out Thursday, I think, about Mom-in-law's status, but it looks like cancer, and in a bad way.

Well, that was a bit of a downer. Don't go calling Slortar or anything, it all just came out today. Off I go to Cambridge to find out more.


One of my friend at work remarked this morning that next to my nameplate it should read "WAH!" because I say it and type it so often. (And why I have a nameplate in my completely deserted basement cubicle is another story.)

But it is such a GOOD word.

Anyway, it is going to rain, I'm headed up to Grand Marais again, I haven't seen my kids in several days, and the best I can do, sharing-wise is to tell you that X-men 3 was a fair to good movie, with many, many, many, many, many liberties taken. Pretend you've never read the comic, only watched the kids morning TV show once, then age it up 15 years with a great big dollop of sexual tension. Presto! X-men 3.

Someone please tell my darling Slortar to cut it out with the smoking, hunting, and drinking. I don't even know this man anymore! Well, he's awfully familiar, but when did he become the good ole' boy red-neck Filipino?


Show me the meaning

I've been totally out of it for the last month. My kids have gone to a co-op preschool, and I'm a board member. The second week of May we got notice that the church we've been in for 52 YEARS was not going to renew our lease for next year...uh, there was some panicking, and rabble rousing, and I had to direct a lot of really hyped up people. It is all good now, we got a one year extension, and we don't want their crummy ole basement, anyway.

I'm the queen of preschool organization, baby.

And, I had a good review at my relatively stable and interesting job which happens to directly support the evil university.
And I had a job interview at Hennepin County libraries as a sub.
And I went to Grand Marais.
And I gave a birthday party, hosted two sets of cousins who came to town, worked at a neighborhood ice cream social, attended training for girl scout camp in two weeks (Yea! Camp Lakamaga!), was trained in to work at the food co-op, went to the dentist, wrote nothing at all, except a fair and balanced letter to the church, got sunburned, had a really good glass of wine (yeah, just one in a whole month) slept very poorly and saw my husband and kids almost not at all.

I am going out of town again this weekend, otherwise I would very much like to come to Derek's soiree on Friday. It would be nice to finally meet the small and mighty Ezra, he of the 8pm bedtime. Alas! Earwax!

Blah blah de blah blah blah.


Ok, real life has been a bore lately, what with the whole evil conservative job that doesn't pay well, the husband who is never home, or always talking about non-profit management, and the kids who suck the energy out of me like...something that really sucks a lot of energy--ooo, like an 1972 goldenrod frigidaire.

Is it any wonder that I am back to my shifty nite-time antics of surfing and reading fan-fiction? I mean, who can blame me?

Anyway, I have been seriously wronged by my alternative universe. I was investigating some personality quizzes (this was actually a work sanctioned activity, but don't ask about that) and I found an inventory that corresponds to Harry Potter characters. So, of course I took it.

Do you know whose personality I have? You'll never guess. You'll never guess because NO ONE WILL EVER THINK OF THIS CHARACTER!!!!! I'm freeking Madame Maxime.

And my S.O. extraordinaire, the fun-maker of all things Harry Potter? Sucky Slortar takes the quiz, and he gets to be SIRIUS BLACK.

I cannot even believe it. I think I will have to go...well, become a whole lot cooler, I guess. Maybe finding a new job will help that.

Freeking giantesses.

(and I meant to include this) the quiz be here: http://piratemonkeysinc.com/quiz.htm
I just had my first overnight road-trip adventure with my three kids (6,4 and 2) -alone-. I think we all survived admirably, and I would definately do it again.

I think part of the reason things went smoothly can be attributed to our aloneness. Most of the time when we go on a trip, we are accompanied by my children's father. He is a most admirable gentleman in the presence of electrical outlets, but upon being stuck in a mini-van for five hours with his wife and small children, becomes slightly diminished in patience and character.

He is not a "drive five hours to look at a waterfall, then sleep on the floor, wake up at dawn and walk down to look at more water the next day" kind of guy. Which was sort of our agenda.

We did miss him, and the kids and I discovered that the best way to make your mother (that's me) feel awful was to shout "I just wish Daddy were here!" in varying tones of voice at every occaision where things are not going your way. They stopped doing it after three days, however.

Slortar cleaned the house while we were gone. Even the bathrooms. He must have missed me.

Why I think the world is not ending today.

When I read my e-mails this morning, there was a long talk from the Dean of whatever who supervises our group at the University. He talked about reviews, and the feelings of ennui right now coming out of winter, and threw in a bit in the middle where we were all struggling to figure out our place in terms of the now universally know Travel Policy Issue. Then he added that there would be two listening sessions where we could come and tell Father President how we really felt. The first one is today. In three hours.

Well, let us not debate the issue, I got the message in time, and I went. (Was this posted other places? I don't know. The seconds session is March 30th on the Minneapolis campus, so get a move on if you want to go.) I was very nervous. I feel every day like I am questioning my place, working as I do for a Catholic University, and being a reasonable, but whoa-baby so much more liberal than you know woman.

I am still anxious to see what the future brings, but I would like to commend everyone who spoke today. You were eloquent, you were proud, and you spoke out for not only yourselves,but for your friends and neighbors and colleagues and people you don't even know. You spoke with grace and I believe, true compassion for everyone, and you made the point over and over that our job as thinking people is to respect everyone, embrace differences, and engage in critical and lively discussion about what these differences mean. Even if they make us uncomfortable. (Even if, God forbid, they make Students uncomfortable.)

I know that this is a thorny issues at this time, and in this place. I know what the stance on being gay and lesbian is, according to the Catholic rule books. I know we all signed up to work here, knowing these things.

But by being present, and being upfront, and being real, we can show the doubters that love is love, that respect is needed for everyone, even if you don't agree with them. We show everyone that a relationship is not sealed with the official documents, but is in the actions of the people who agree to be in it. Personally, I am still talking to my colleagues and friends and trying to be as upfront as I can (being married to a man makes all kinds of assumptions easy to coast on.)

But I have a little bit more hope for things today.


Blah blah blah.

My computer is being fixed again. I feel so at sea without it! I am using Slortar's but he is very possessive. I can only use it when he is not home, not at work, and not at class. This equals about 15 minutes every two weeks.

Anyway, I have been up to nothing excited, except I am going to read some of my poems in public on Wednesday night. I've been taking a class a the Loft, which has been great if for no other reason that I get two hours each week to write. My last class is this Sunday, and I will miss it. I have to admit that I am terrified about the reading part. The Loft has an open mike thingy for anyone who is currently taking a class, and one of my co-poetical people goaded me into it.

Well, what doesn't kill us makes us stronger. Or maims us permanently.

What I gave Izzy for his birthday

Eh, so I gave my two year old a lame present, and now I'm sharing it:

For Izzy

Twinkle bright eyes,
flying fingers,
ape and little copycat.

Glinting white teeth,
courting danger,
“Climb up now!” “Sit on that!”

Sister’s playmate,
sister’s nightmare,
hide the books and steal the toys.

Tufted brown curls,
stringy quick limbs,
momma’s lapful, proud, the boy.


Chinese New Year, right.

I just got back from a Chinese New Year celebration. It was a surprisingly fun family adventure. I was confused for large portions of the program, which adds a lot. I was really confused during the skit about Chinese language school. Teenagers speaking Chinese and the only words I understood were "Korean Soap Opera".

The highlight of the program was during a particularly long dance done by a herd of 12 year dancers. My four year old, who has a fabulously raspy smoker voice, said really, really, loudly:

"Mommy, why do they keep showing us their legs?"

I guess it loses something, but it was amusing at the time. My mom in law and I just started giggling.

The drummers at the end of the program were absolutely fabulous. I loved them, and want to become a Chinese drumming fan girl, starting today.