Thursday, October 30

To Boston with my Da today, hi-diddley-o,
I'll sit and knit in waiting rooms wherever we go.
We'll have fun with oxygen, tanks lined in a row,
to Boston with my Da today! Hi-diddley-o!

Tuesday, October 28

Sitting not quite in the dark, not quite in shock, but knowing either is possible.

Monday, October 27

My crush list took a little break while I was out and about, but here it is, in full poetic force...

10.Shin Yu Pai
9. Michael Franco
8. Aaron Tieger
7. Mark Lamoureux
6. Mick Carr
5. Sean Cole
4. Chris Rizzo
3. Jim Behrle
2. Xtina
1. Joel Sloman
Left the Grand sometime after noon yesterday and wandered toward Central Square. By myself walking, with men behaving like men can, and Nate and Jen yelling to me as they drive by.

Hoped to find Suzy at the Phoenix Landing, then anybody I knew at the Field. Realizing after a while with my Murphy's that yes, I was alone. Irish boys playing pool in the back room, me half expecting a recognizable face to plod into the room. No, my nearest friend would be the silent man several stools down who finished three pints in the time I had my one. Even the boys at the corner talking about writing seemed more distant.

Tried to get something to eat but everything looked too big. Took the T to Harvard Square. Walked into the Greenhouse, walked out. To Woolcott's, where too many new knitters were pawing single skeins of extravagant yarns, asking the inevitable "how many skeins will I need for a scarf?"

Next door, the Red Line, nearly empty at the bar and with the football game on. I stop in for a bowl of soup and another pint. Wasting time, it going too slowly... order desert and scotch, move down the bar away from the business man and toward the English Premier League match the bartender has turned on. The match ends in a draw. I finish what is before me and although this bar makes me feel a little less vulnerable in my loneliness I can find no other reason to stay.

Pack myself up, out the door and who is there but Joel Sloman! Back in for coffee for me and a martini for him. Talk talk and I lay myself out more than I meant to but it is so nice to see Joel after being so alone for those hours. Happy it was Joel I ran into. Happy Joel is Joel.

To Wordsworth for the reading, met back up with James and the crowd. Xtina read wonderfully, I would like to read what she read again, or hear it again. Joel was as expected, shattering, nearly, his stuff is so good. Wanda Phipps was lovely as well but I have to admit to being particularly affected by Joel and Xtina since they both mean so much to me.

At the end dinner with Ben and Zac loud, at John Harvard's, with a somewhat surly server and mediocre food. Good company, though. Happy to see them.

Overwhelmed by the day and it welling up inside me. On the way to the car I feel nearly like falling apart. So much on the line and impossible to notice, anticipation unseen. A city can make me vulnerable if I am not ready for it.

Saturday, October 25

It is nearly the perfect season for naps. Afternoon sun shines into the window by the bed, warming my face. Even though I couldn't sleep I lay there for some time with the orange shine on my eyelids.
Beans for chili on the stove, tea water on and I am happy for the day. Traffic on the way home from the match was utterly yuppie at the exit for Salem. Witches! Witches! Abigail Faulkner, my great-(add many greats here) grandmother, found guilty of witchcraft. Erased from public record, "dead" to the public, but not put to death since she was pregnant.

Friday, October 24

Some things are lovely enough to note, such as the way eyelashes cling to eachother when wet. How tape laced along the road sparkles in the sunlight.
Gata is doing her excericises. I am cutting dead branches off the ficus tree. And the prehistoric pine.
Barely waking, time for cleaning. Laundry! Laundry! Special ways for special stains. What in this house can't be vacuumed? Whites in the washer, water the plants...

Thursday, October 23

Morning talk with Gabriel concerning industrialization, then home to clean after being away so much. What evil things lurk in the fridge! Gerrit over for lunch, lovely as always. Me with that lovely feeling, a fluttering in my breast.

Violin in a new spot looking out out as far as I can see over the Atlantic. A new piece to learn, with shifts, and a pint for good measure. My mind is wandering and I am letting it go as it pleases. It has nowhere to be for some time yet.

A new song running through my mind so that I have no choice but to listen to it until I know it by heart. Another love song.

Tuesday, October 21

Back from Buffalo, here’s the report:

Friday morning tired and worn into the car and onto the road. A.D. and I navigating music and words, coming to common ground. Stopping stopping stopping for various indulgences and needs, all minor. Across the landscape full of texture and color, browns and reds, cross-hatched in the season. Chocolate in my mouth melting slowly.

Arriving in Buffalo some time after dark, into careful streets of quiet houses in Williamsville, past schools and jobs and stories littering the way. Hello to the folks, food for the belly, and out the door again. A couple beercicles later we are back and into bed.

Saturday morning bagels and lox. Family ride to the Falls, this side of the border. Floaty pen and shot glass, fudge and post cards. Over the border, past the floral clock, to lunch looking over the river. Two hours on the bridge.

Saturday night: Anchor bar for Buffalo wings, D. and A. and I are drinking rounds like fish drink water. Jon Jansen at the other end of the bar, we say hello and he meets my Hello Kitty notebook. Wee Canadians keep us amused as the rest of the place recognizes Redskins. Ted (ted!)shows up and in our glory we let him in on the secrets we know, but not all of them. More rounds, whiskey and beer. Cognac when Rick arrives. Waitress joins us for a glass of wine, busboy enters the conversation in his own way…

Out too late to get up early but by 7:30 I am up, knitting in the dark kitchen, watching squirrels eat bird seed. Family rises, breakfast is eaten, father to gym and the rest off to find a craft show. We failed. Then father, A and I see Blake at the museum. Arthur Dove and paper mache, explanations and theory. Muses on either side. Out for coffee and music and tremendous cranberry streusel. Back home for dinner.

Sunday night (surprise!) out again, pick up Ted and Jay and Rendezvous with oysters and crayfish. How to win a girl, a self-help program in 67 easy steps. Pink with the rat and the drummer, outside lacking fries and gravy.

Home late again. Morning bustle, up and out. Brunch, cider, Tim Horton’s. On the road to Albany. Dinner with friends and an escort out of the city by police car 105. Drive, drive, drive. Happy to be home collapsing in arms.

Saturday, October 18

In Buffalo with A.D.- off to the Falls!

Thursday, October 16

My dental hygenist this morning was a man. I wasn't ready for that. Posters of the inside of a cockpit, him on a motorcycle, Swedish and Italian flags. I wonder where the last hygenist went.

Clean teeth new brush free is always cheaper. Looking at the mess around the house and not doing a thing about it. Leaving for Buffalo in the morning and what does a girl bring to Buffalo? To Boston, to Boston, jiggedy-jig, no time to pack anyway. Unless you count now.

Packed books today for a fair in Springfield. I won't be there. Found some good books, some lovely books, folios, facsimile reprints, firsts, etc. Lovely Canterbury Tales, illustrated by Kent, 2 vols. First English of Freud's Interpretation of Dreams. Brownies and Water Babies.

Packing up my violin before my lesson scared to death by a spider, black with white on the back. Spent some time catching it, locked it in an old plastic container. Grabbed my spider book and ran off (late already) to my lesson. Tried to identify it but my book isn't so good.

I am afraid of spiders. Mostly the brown recluse, or the Violin Spider. I know this is not a recluse but I am nervous about letting it go until I know what it is: one needn't fear what one knows (although I would like to keep that option). I will try again when I get home tonight. If there is one spider there may be more. I would like to to have to be afraid of this kind altogether.

Wednesday, October 15

Bad mood day. Later letters of Lear, baseball is breaking my heart. Found my own copy of Goops, knew I knew it from somewhere and under the piles of art books in other languages there it was. Mom gets art books from the back room, Guest-man Rat boks for the book Rome.

Sunday, October 12

A quick note on baseball:

After discussing the ugliness of yesterday's game over and over and over again, I've come to understand that I really don't like that part of the game. James talked at length about the violence that is inherent in sport. I understand that there will be some violent actions, but bench clearing? Coaches swinging at players?

I understand that intimidation and retaliation are part of the game. A pitcher has to throw inside. Occasionally he will hit a player. There will be hard slides, hard tags, hard plays. Fine. Good, tough playing is fine with me.

But keep it in the play. I am sick of this extra drama. There are 4 umps on the field, 6 for playoffs. Can't they keep some sort of order? As far as I am concerned, starting toward the mound is not okay. Coaches yelling at umps, screaming in their faces, is not okay. Benches clearing is not okay. If a basketball player leaves the bench, he is ejected. A soccer coach can be ejected if he leaves his box. Even in football coaches don't rush onto the field.

Why is this behavior okay in baseball?

There were some great plays in yesterday's game that will never get a second glance because f the rumble in the fourth inning. What about Damon coming back from his concussion, getting a few (albeit questionable) hits and catching a ball right off the wall, or that nice double play late in the game? Completely overshadowed.

I love baseball. Really. But I would like to see a little more accountability for bad behavior, both for players and coaches. Someone walks toward the mound? Eject them. A coach runs out onto the field? Eject them. Benches clear? Gone.

I know this is asking a lot, but unless the tone of baseball changes, ugly behavior will continue. This activity outside of plays takes away from the game. Come on, guys, play ball.
We are nearly rioting here for lack of baseball. The creation of dimples can be a tragic process with long-lasting consequences. That was bloody yesterday.

It is important to note that I bought my cowboy boots before the Red Sox clinched anything. Are you looking for another girl? Pornographic needlepoint can be disappointing and Moomins are hard to find. Little My! I don't want to change the world.

Boston seems so far away some days, what with roads and rain and stomach aches. Noah cleaned my tub on Friday, leaving little footprints of mud. Could've gone to the Pats game today but no! the rain! They've never heard of love.

I can get sentimental when I am homesick. I apologize to all who have been affected. Pears from the back yard make good crisp. They don't know about us.

Berry tea was very berry. Sports can be a good weapon for a girl. Old Joe Clark! Is Arm Sasser because of the catcher? He should know. Josh Reynolds and his stories of Columbian cowboys, holsters and man purses. I go to the dentist on Thursday.

Melancholy what with having pillows and stuffed mouse thrown at me and still no baseball! Good to be home. Tired, but good.

Tuesday, October 7

So here we are in the Seattle rain. I spent the day running around Capitol Hill, drinking beverages of all sorts. I replaced the Buzzcocks pin I lost in Maine this summer. I wrote postcards to my nephews. I browsed.

Met up with Babs and Angie to go to the Hot House Spa for steam and dry saunas, hot tub and cold plunge. Met Jess upstairs after at the lesbian bar upstairs and watched in horror as Johnny "Monchichi" Damon and Damian Jackson banged heads. Drank a pint-sized martini. Went for pho.

My crush list this week is Seattle-based and, I'm sorry to say, barely a poet on there. Lots of oceanographers, though.

10. Gus
9. David
8. John Mickett
7. Colin
6. Jess
5. Angie Dickens
4. Mark
3. Neil Banas
2. The Goodship (Lisa, Christie and Susan)
1. Babs!

Gus we met at the Pac Inn, watched the Sox together and enjoyed talk about Massachusetts... David is a bouncer at The Kells and a member of the Celtic Supporter Club out there... he talked to us and made us feel welcome at the bar at 4:30 Saturday morning... John Mickett kept me entertained at the First friday Kegger... Colin sand along to Leanord Cohen songs, but in a gentle, background sort of way... Jess showed up tonight! Angie is always nice to see... Mark was fun at the party and tea in the morning and such a nice voice for cowboy songs! Neil put up with me monopolizing Amanda and is amusing and sweet... the Goodship, well, such a nice group of girls, and they let me stay here! Susan, what you said at the party right back at you, if I wasn't, etc. Christie is the best example of "the adult thing to do" and still be a great person*. I'd want Lisa on my side in a bar fight, or if I were sad I'd want her around, or if I wanted to have a rockin' kick-ass time. And Babs, well, Miss Amanda Babson is just about the best friend in the world. And a decent shot at pool.

We're going to bed soon, tired from eating too much and wet from the rain. G'night, Seattle. G'night, home.

*"The adult thing to do" is what my boss says to me. It means to do things right without putting up with or giving much shit.

Monday, October 6

I hope Franz Wright won't dismiss me because Aaron is my friend. I'm worried now about the company I keep. Will we ever be able to overcome these social boundaries? Oh, Franz Wright, you don't even know me!

In an attempt to be fair, I would like to point out that there are a lot of people who don't know me. Stella McCartney, designer-daughter of Paul does no know me. Tony Kushner, whose play Homebody/Kabul I may disparage or applaud, does not know me. Jack Black does not know me. Nor does Jack White. The guy who does the weather on Fox News does not know me. Etc.

Friends, there are a lot of people out there. Even Nick Piombino doesn't know me. Really. That's the nice thing about this world. So many people we could come to know. I'd just hate to have doors close like that.

Franz, I promise I won't judge you by your friends. Maybe not even by your poetry. Nick, you are being held to a higher standard: I found your book Poems at a used book store in the University District out here in Seattle and plan to take it on the plane home to read when the old lady next to me asks if the yarn I am knitting with has any angora in it and could I please put it away? She is having a bad reaction...

Sunday, October 5

Sunday morning coming down...

All my friends are still asleep upstairs but one. There are lots of donuts leftover. The party had 3 themes: Diner, Denner and Donner. Crazy kids. The night ended with a few of us drinking whiskey around the kitchen table singing Johnny Cash songs.

When will everybody wake up?

Saturday, October 4

Today is Amanda Babson's birthday. We are getting ready for a party, with a secret theme to be revealed later. Neil is hanging signs. I am making soup. Babs is mopping.

We went to a Celtic Supporter's Club down near Pike Place Market this morning at 4:30 to see Celtic beat Rangers. Woohoo. It was still so early when we left, the sky was dark for some time. We had breakfast at Beth's, big big food and drunk drunk kids. Then shopping at the Farmer's Market. Donuts from Mighty-O's. For the party.

Last night we went to the First Friday Kegger for the oceanography department at U W. Those crazy kids. And adults. Bus home Pac Inn Fish Chips Beer. Yum.

Thursday, October 2

Viva Viva SeaTac!

Got to Seattle last night. Dinner at Malay Satay. Kind of in the international district. Home to set up my bed on Amanda's floor (a futon brought up from downstairs) then out to the Pac Inn down the street. A couple beers, a very bad game of pool (on my part), a heartbreaking baseball game and a good night's sleep after.

This morning we had oatmeal with salmonberry syrup. Are cloudberries and salmonberries the same thing? We made our way on the 44 to the Ballard Locks. Big fish jumping. Jump, fish, jump! To Archie McFee's on the way home, then a couple of Scandinavian gift stores. I was looking for Moomins but didn't find any. I finished the second Moomin book Joel lent me on the plane. What I wouldn't do for my own Little My.

We went to a Norwegian food shop. Babs got a tube of smoked herring pate for Neil. I got a little piece of almond cake and, a moment later, a hot dog. The women were t alking about them in a way that it seemed sinful to leave without the option of trying one. So much better than American hot dogs! You'll never want to eat any other kind of sausage! How could I resist? I don't know when I will eat it.

We're going for coffee now (they have thebest computers and coffee and smack here, I heard). Then on the First Thursday Art Walk. We hope to see beaded oddities and pornographic needlepoint.