I Could’ve Had a DC

Listen to me.  Listen to me all you people at home in Maine who are still, STILL, staring down the mounds of snow in the corners of your homes and wishing to all things related to god that it would be spring already.

Are you listening?

Spring exists on time in other places!  Places as close as our nation’s capitol!

I know.  I KNOW.  You already knew that.  And I knew it, too. Only, did I?  Did I really? Did I know it the way I know that when the sun sets it will rise again?

No, I did not.  Not lately, I didn’t.

The ways things go with me is this:  the sun warms my skin, the breeze doesn’t hurt to breathe and still, STILL, I doubt.  Then, 24 hours later, I start to recognize that in fact, things are blooming, things are purple.  They are purple, people.  They are not crocus purple, like maybe-possibly-if-things-feel-right-I’ll-take-a-peek-outside purple, they are brazen purple — like Prince.  I’m talking PUR. PLE.  Wisteria.  Azalea.  Tulips.  They are purple, they are yellow, they are green and they are glorious.

It is spring.  It is spring in DC, and I am witnessing the beauty and awe of it.  I had forgotten.  Forgive me, but I had just forgotten.

I had recently committed to not complaining about winter, in those April 20 degree days, but now I compose myself and I smooth the lapels of my 3-piece suit and I say off with your proverbial head, winter.  Off with it!

Please.  Remind me why I live in Maine again?



Let Me State the Obvious

It’s been a snowy winter. A cold one, too.  There, I wrote it.  But unlike so very, very, very, very, very many other people, that’s the first time.  I have not left my house, nor visited Facebook, without multiple people mentioning the weather – how overwhelming the amount of snow is, how cold the…cold is.  How dreary the days are. How long the school year is going to be.   How interminable the winter has become.

I don’t know why I just can’t get on the griping bandwagon.  It’s too crowded, I think, and a monotonous ride.  I’m less tired of winter than I am of the comments about winter.  It just is what it is.  Meh.  I’m indifferent anymore.

The weather gives us something to talk about, sure.  I, for one, wish I were more clever than to use the weather as a ‘go to’ topic. That’s why I’m lately refusing to discuss it. Previously, I’ve done my fair share of grumbling.  For example, I don’t like it when the air hurts my teeth.  I don’t like the way cold jeans feel against my knees. I don’t like bursts of arctic air in my eyeballs.  Though there’s no app for that, I’ve figured out ways to deal with all three of those things.  We’re ingenious, we New Englanders.

You know I’m right when I say it won’t be long — around four months, maybe four and a half, when people are complaining about the sun, the heat and how…hot that heat is.

First one to mention it to me gets a wet fingertip in the ear, a noogie and a wedgie thrown in for good measure.


Think Think Happy Happy!

Do you ever look at your children, at something they’re doing, or have done, or are clearly planning on doing, they just may not know it yet, and think, now just where exactly did you come from?  Let me see those hospital papers.  People tell me this happens to them all the time, but not so much to me.  I know my kids are mine, and not only because they look just like me.

When Garrett was three (by far the greatest age ever, because language acquisition and mistakes delight me) and would struggle with something that was bothering his wee little brain, he would stop in the middle of a room, bend at the waist, put his fingertips to his temples and seethe “think, think, think!”  That’s Garrett, basically.


Luke, and let it be known that he has outgrown this, was more of a hands down his pants kind of kid.  His three year old self used to do this a great deal, he was just so jubilant about the lack of diaper in there, he couldn’t help himself.  He would lounge on the couch, one thumb in his mouth, the other hand down his pants, and exclaim – the antithesis of his brother – “happy, happy, happy!”  Aaaaaannd, yup, that’s basically Luke.


I don’t wonder where any of this came from – I am an aces combination of these two – this thinker and this glutton for happy.

Where am I going with this you ask?  Here.  I am going here.  To my semester reading list!  LOOK AT IT.  It’s gorgeous.

All kinds of thinkly bliss.

All kinds of thinkly bliss.  And my favorite happy Buddha.  And pens I like.

I’m sharing it in case any of you lovelies wonders just what it is I’m doing in my course work.  It’s quite a nice set up if you ask me (and some of you did).  I read books by the masters and then I write about their masterful mastery, and then I try to twist and wring out all the best things from their work, and make a new soapy dishwater of my own.

I have about five months to devour these exquisite works of art and let the fine methods of structure and diction and sequence and story arc seep into my brain enough that I can somehow steal all of the best bits (without actually stealing them, obviously.)  So maybe more like emulate them without actually copying them, or let them imprint somewhere in the deep recesses where they can, later, come crashing back through like the koolaid guy through the wall…all … here. read me!  I’m perfection on the page! Oh, yeah!







Oh, but first, the reading.  Joan Didion, for example.  Joan Didion is my current obsession.  I read her stuff, and by “stuff” I mean her breathtaking variant combinations of the exact 26-letter alphabet I’ve known since Mrs. Callahan first taught it to me – mere words on paper, yes, but put together, nay, orchestrated, in such a way, such a deceptively simple (read:  astoundingly complicated) way.  She makes me put my fingertips to my temple, that one.  Think, think, think is my inner monologue when I study her work.

As an aside:  if you’re looking for something to read I recommend The White Album, which was on last semester’s reading list, but which now lives beside my bed, my little bedside pal .  You don’t have to exert too much brainpower to read or enjoy the book, only to figure out how the hell she does it. How the hell she achieves the spellboundation, that is.   P.S.  If you figure it out, do write and let me know.  I could use your thoughts for my annotations.

Anyway.  All the while I’m reading her work, and also other work, and even more books than that, I’m thinking, I’m just so happy, happy, happy!  It’s the thinking that makes me so happy, see?

In a way I’m this little guy…and this little guy…


and my heart is full.  Of happy thoughts.




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