November 29, 2011

into the world within

I'm on the road for work, traveling back to my home state, sleeping in my home town, spending time with the family and friends of my beginning,

I've been given my sister's RV to call my own while I'm here, just a few feet from the house, yet a world unto itself. I'm loving it down in my gypsy soul.

 I soon realized that no journey carries one far unless, 
as it extends into the world around us, 
 it goes an equal distance into the world within.
 - Lillian Smith

November 27, 2011

still I lie sleepless

I'm always hot. It's most annoying when I try to sleep. In that trickster way that the Universe seems to enjoy of pairing couples who run at opposite ends of the hot/cold spectrum, my wife is always cold. The thermostat wars are played out most fiercely in bed, she with her electric blanket on high, me with my fan(s) and brutally cold air, whether from an open window in the winter or an AC set so low it's ecologically criminal in the summer.

To make it even more difficult, I can only sleep really well covered by a heavy blanket - and by heavy, I mean weighty. But then, of course, I burn up.

I look at these thick, plush beds below and I'm torn: oh, don't those look divine, the perfect heft to snug you down to sleep...and, oh my god, don't those look frightfully hot, guaranteed to make falling asleep a miserable impossibility...

My wife, of course, would suffer no such quandary. She would love them unequivocally.  

What do you think?

A flock of sheep that leisurely pass by
One after one; the sound of rain, and bees
Murmuring; the fall of rivers, winds and seas,
Smooth fields, white sheets of water, and pure sky -
I've thought of all by turns, and still I lie

~William Wordsworth, "To Sleep"

November 19, 2011

because it's worth it! MARCEL THE SHELL WITH SHOES ON, TWO

Why do I smile a lot? Uh, because it's worth it!

In case you want to see Part 1 again...(and you do, really, you do!): MARCEL THE SHELL WITH SHOES ON

November 18, 2011

all the year

Sheesh, they start Christmas earlier and earlier every year! Thanksgiving isn't until next week...

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Whatever. I usually agree, but this year I can hardly wait to get the last plate scraped, the leftovers divvied up, and then halls decked.

Still, since Thanksgiving is a week away, I'll indulge just a little. For now.

Oooooh, pretty...

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.
-Ebenezer Scrooge
(Charles Dickens)

November 13, 2011

the elusive boundaries of our origin

If i could only have 1 super power it would be to fly. (If I could have 2, I would add invisibility. Just sayin'.)

Doesn't everyone wish they could fly?

 Above:photographer Natsumi Hayashi. She sometimes has to jump as many as 300 times to get the shot she's after. See more here:

Within all of us is a varying amount of space lint and star dust, the residue from our creation.
Most are too busy to notice it, and it is stronger in some than others. 
It is strongest in those of us who fly and is responsible for an unconscious, subtle desire
 to slip into some wings and try for the elusive boundaries of our origin. 
~K.O. Eckland 


November 6, 2011

I heard demands

Last night I attended a party at sweet Val's house, to celebrate Día de los Muertos, or "Day of the Dead." Valerie goes all out, with traditional foods, costumes, a bonfire, hooping hoopsters, music, dancing, an ofrenda (altar), and free-flowing drinks of all kinds.

Val and her sugar skull cake
Chris "Caliente" and Val
Me and Jill
Nikki and Friend

Val's ofrenda (altar)
I love the idea of celebrating lost loved ones, but there's more to it than that. We love them, but we fear them, too. The syrupy sweet coffee we put on the altar because it's Auntie's favorite is an offering of love, but it's also a gesture of appeasement. As kind as she may have been before death, after she's passed we don't really want Auntie gliding into the kitchen in search of a cup of joe in the middle of the night. 

We intentionally but "safely" explore our fears in order to overcome them...Rubber-necking at car crashes, watching horror movies, reading true crime novels, telling spooky stories at sleepovers, putting evil witches in fairy tales, and yes - even Halloween and Day of the Dead celebrations - all put us face-to-face with our fears . In these scenarios we always come out victorious, and maybe a little less afraid.  

I know I did...

These amazing installations by artist James Hopkins serve the same purpose, in a contemporary but unmistakable manner.


by Hart Crane
The host, he says that all is well
And the fire-wood glow is bright;
The food has a warm and tempting smell,—
But on the window licks the night.

Pile on the logs... Give me your hands,
Friends! No,— it is not fright...
But hold me... somewhere I heard demands...
And on the window licks the night.

From wikipedia:

Each year in the beginning of November, millions around the world honor and remember their deceased loved ones. From Latin America to the Philippines, people visit family members' and friends' graves, eat customary food or follow particular traditions. Also known in some countries as All Souls' Day, the Day of the Dead originated as a Roman Catholic holiday.
In Mexico and large parts of Latin America, the Day of the Dead is a national holiday and widely celebrated. People build small altars and bring the deceased's favorite food to the cemetery. In the Philippines, entire families spend the night at the graveyard, while in many countries in Europe people visit relatives' graves and gather with family and friends.

See more super extra awesomesauce Day of the Dead stuff here:

What are you afraid of?


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