Entertain Me

I’m told the temperature was over 100 today, though I wasn’t aware of it at the time. Funny, when you don’t know how hot it is, it doesn’t seem as hot.

We watched The Phantom of the Opera on DVD the other night (Wednesday? Thursday? One of those) while eating hamburgers and a lovely caesar salad with lots of garlic. I love the music. I loved the show on stage. I thought the sets in the movie were gorgeous. The movie itself did nothing for me – I felt the entire cast lacked depth, and it annoyed me when they spoke lyrics that were originally sung, because first, when people speak in rhyme, but don’t change the phrasing it sounds really stupid, and second, because it just made it obvious that these actors needed far more experience. Yeah, I’m picky. Sue me.

Tonight, we went to the Cinemark in Cedar Hill to see Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, which is the only Star Wars film I’ve managed to stay awake through since the three I grew up with. Not only that, but I actually enjoyed it. Also, I liked the theater itself – rocking chairs, liftable armrests, and comfy chairs – it’s not the Century 22 (0r 23, 24 or 25) from San Jose, but for a modern theater it’ll do.

The nice thing about having eight million movie theater complexes within a twelve mile radius: No lines. We showed up at 6:30 for the seven pm show, had no waiting, and got good seats. Yay, suburbia.

(In truth, we could have seen it in the theater on our street, but it’s one of those that was built in the old style, with arm rests that don’t lift, and not much rake in the rows of chairs, so it’s fine for a sleeper film in the middle of the afternoon, but not for something that you really want to enjoy).

Fuzzy is on call for the next ten days, but after that we’ll be visiting another sort of movie theater, the Angelika in Dallas, because it’s been over a year since I’ve seen an art film on a big screen, and I’m suffering from withdrawl. I mean, blockbusters are all very well and good, but I like the stuff from the Sundance festival, too. You know, the kind with subtitles, or at least lots of subtext. The movie I want to see, Winter Solstice, may not still be playing in ten days, but I’m sure something else will strike my fancy.

In other news, I’ve expanded my cd collection a bit more, with the purchase of yet another disc I found at Starbucks: From the Ground Up by Antigone Rising, an all-female band with a folk-fusion sound that sort of combines vintage 10,000 Maniacs with Blues Traveler. Lovely stuff. I highly recommend it.


My calendar tells me what month it is, and I keep track of the days, but I’ve been in a writing mood so deep and intense that I haven’t written anything ONLINE since Wednesday.

I’m in a groovous mood, and am often found late at night, dancing in the kitchen, my pony-tail bobbing to the beat in my head.

I’m re-visiting my 2004 NaNo project, attacking it from a different angle, and using different tools, and I’m excited and inspired about it.

More later.


It may not be Halloween, but I’ve had ghosts on my mind a lot lately.

Last night, I woke feeling hot and sweaty, and read the numbers on the clock (5:17) through sleep-blurred eyes. Getting up to click the a/c to a lower temperature would have required moving two dogs and turning on a light, so I merely flipped my pillow onto the cool side, and pushed the covers down, and closed my eyes. Half an hour later, I smelled my grandmother’s night-time cream (oil of olay), and felt a soothing, cool hand over my brow. It’s likely it was just a sense-memory and a breeze from the open window, but I prefer to believe my grandmother was watching over me.

I’m not sure I believe in literal ghosts, but energy, memory, thought – the line between those things combining to give the perception of a presence, and an ACTUAL presence is pretty thin, really, especially for someone like me, who has an overactive imagination.

On other nights, I am dragged from my dreams by nameless terror, a feeling of dread, and a dog growling at nothing. But those are rare happenings, and the older I get, the less they occur. (Sometimes I wonder, though, if I’m merely picking up the dogs’ dreams – for often I am awakened by one of them paddling in their sleep, chasing birds, or scratching to dig a hole.)

Different kinds of ghosts also fill my head – fragments of conversations I’d love to forget, snatches of songs and stories I wish I could remember – these things haunt me during my waking hours, lurking in the back of my brain, and giving me a tiny prick, as with a pin, now and then, to spark a writing project, help me choose music to play, influence a meal I might cook, or a book I might read.

Tonight, we watched National Treasure on DVD – an enjoyable film, for what it was – but the ghost of my grandfather watched along with us, in the sense that I knew this is a movie he’d have enjoyed – he loved puzzles – and a part of me tallied points he would have particularly liked.

They say people you love are with you as long as you keep them in your heart. My grandparents, then, must linger really close by.


I tossed and turned all night, my head filled with thoughts, ideas, notions, and various images that begged to be explored, finally falling asleep just as the sun was coming up and the birds were stirring from sleep.

Birdsong makes a lovely lullabye.

I was in bed, and checking email, at 12:30 this afternoon, got up, did some work, played with the dogs, thought about bathing them, didn’t bathe them, and had a tuna sandwich on toasted tomato-basil bread before realizing that sometimes the One Productive Thing for the day doesn’t have to come until the end.

I made teriyaki chicken and broccoli with soy and wasabi, and we ate while watching 99% of the tivo’d Gilmore Girls episode, missing the very last two lines because it ran over by a minute, and tivo didn’t pick that up.

But I read online spoilers that revealed the missing lines and I’m eagerly awaiting October, and the aftermath.

I came back upstairs to find ants swarming my keyboard – I hate ants. I detest ants. LOOKing at ants makes me itchy all over. So I’ve spent the last hour removing every key from my keyboard, cleaning all the crevices with windex-doused cotton-swabs, and putting it all back together.

Oddly, the computer booted faster with a clean keyboard.

It’s only 11:30, but my body is telling me SLEEP, and I am going to answer, even forgoing a vintage shark movie on TCM.

Because the thing is, even though I’m still in a good mood, I feel as if I’ve really been asleep all day.

Not Ready for the WB

We attended our first HOA meeting tonight. We don’t live in a condo, and we’re not a gated community, so it seems weird to me to even have an HOA, but we do, and they were meeting, so we went.

When we lived in our townhouse in San Jose, there were only six homeowners, so we were all on the board, and we had perfunctory meetins every month that amounted to, “The gardeners suck, let’s yell at them, stop parking in the fire lane, who wants to be president next?”

The meeting we went to last was nothing like those informat meetings in California. It was, in fact, much more like the Town Meetings on The Gilmore Girls, full of eccentric characters who bickered with each other, but since our ‘neighborhood’ consists of between 2300 and 2400 homes, I guess that makes sense.

I haven’t observed the characters, or their bickering, enough to adequately describe them, and the meeting room at the library had the a/c set to “arctic,” so what energy I was expending was used for maintaining the minimum body temperature needed to survive, and not really on paying attention, but much of it amused me.

These people need help, but I don’t really want to volunteer for anything that requires being on a committee – because after seeing the sizes of soft drinks here in Texas, I’m terrified that the “camels” these people create would be big enough that one bowel movement would obliterate a city block.

(The reference here is, for the two people who don’t get it, to the notion that a camel is a horse designed by a committee.)

I volunteered to write for the newsletter.
I said ‘yay’ and ‘aye’ and ‘nay’ when appropriate.

But mostly I sat there shivering and thinking, “This would be more fun with coffee, and a better script.”

Jackson’s Rock

A writing challenge courtesy of Tales from the Ridge: 250 words with the title “Jackson’s Rock”

Their relationship still felt new, the first time he took her to the woods. She loved him, and could see he loved the cabin like an old friend, so she didn’t complain about the lack of water pressure, the mouse droppings in the back of the pantry, or the miss-matched sheets. She simply took half an antihistamine, and began cleaning while he went to light a fire, and turn on the boiler for hot water.

She asked if they could go for a walk before it got dark. (Before the mosquitoes came out in force, to eat her alive.)

He grinned and said that would be a lovely idea. (She liked that he could use the word ‘lovely’ and not lose an ounce of masculinity.) He made her change into clunky hiking boots, and then took her by the hand.

They wandered toward the creek, a merrily burbling stream of water, with a beach just big enough for two chairs and a cooler. At the end of the beach was a smooth expanse of sun-bathed rock that jutted out into the center of the creek.

He told her as a kid he’d spent hours there, with books and the neighbor’s old retriever for company and that he was always yelled at for not wearing sunscreen, and coming home sunburned, but happy.

They stood on the rock, and kissed in the sunshine, and then he asked her a whispered question, and slipped the ring onto her finger when she answered yes.

Shopping is Dangerous

After church, and after our weekly post-church lunch at Panera, I went into one of my favorite clothing stores with the intention of buying a belt – just a belt – and then leaving.

I didn’t buy a belt.

I did buy a tangerine and raspberry gypsy skirt, and a top to go with it, three t-shirts (tangerine, lime, black), and two bras (one is strapless, the other boring white, but oh, so comfy).

Fruit colors seem to be my thing this year: tangerine, lime, raspberry, cherry, plum, lemon, strawberry – or maybe it’s not fruit that I’m patterning my wardrobe after, but sorbet – icy cold, slightly sweet, and always refreshing.

I’m trying to get away from wearing black so often.
I’m trying to wear skirts more.
I’m falling in love with my cleavage.

Life is FUN.

UnMutter – Week 119

I say… And you think… ?

  1. Grandma:: Esther
  2. Pet:: Zorro
  3. Desolate:: Mojave Desert
  4. Backspace:: Delete
  5. Common ground:: compromise
  6. Storm:: front
  7. Dark:: ages
  8. Water bottle:: necessity
  9. Training:: bra
  10. Dot coms:: domain slut (me)

Like this meme? Play along here.


It has been a day of words and books and sleep and more words. I feel as though my relationship with language has been rekindled, my love of writing renewed.

Of course, the day began with the annoyance of finding that the copiers at Kinkos were all being uncooperative – half needed service, most had no paper, and the remaining two were sporting apparently-new software that made it impossible to make landscape copies of lettersized paper, instead of portrait copies. The very helpful too-hovery (is that a word? It is now) Kinko’s Dude tried to solve the problem, but failed to really listen, though at least he found the paper I needed.

Despite that it’s been a good day. A contest entry submitted another piece finished, headway on something bigger than it was but not yet planned enough to describe. . . projects galore and so much energy, I feel like I’m in a disco lit by a thousand suns, all twinkling to the sound of MY inner beat.

This is my brain.
This is my brain, high on LIFE.

Taking Wing

This morning when I opened the front door, there was an orange butterfly resting on the sun-warmed glass of the storm door, as if waiting to greet me, and usher me into the day.

I thought about snapping its picture, but when I went to get the camera, and then returned, it had disappeared. I imagine it found a flower, then spiralled in front of a dogs nose, teasing, but remaining out of reach, and then possibly alighting in a small child’s hair.

It made me remember our trip to see the butterfly exhibit several weeks ago – outside, it was cold and windy. Inside it was hot, and rainforest-humid, and the two-story room was filled with plants and streams and free-flying butterflies.

This one (actually a moth) was resting on a leaf, just around the final turn, just above my eye-level. Fuzzy snapped the picture. In real life, it had a wingspan of five or six inches.

Really Big Moth
Click picture for larger image.