Thursday, July 28, 2011

Delightful, for lack of a better word.


Last week I was supposed to write about feet.  I was too tired, too dead on the aforementioned, to do it.  This week’s prompt is to think about the things that irritate me.  Ponder them.  List them.  Know them.  Then write about what delights me. 

For starters, can I just say how much I hate Cyn for coming up with that prompt?  Far, far too apt this week.  Aptness is a finely edged weapon.  I have a stack of irritating things to ponder lately, most of them work related.  A tall, crooked, top-heavy stack of heaving irritations, just waiting for the most inopportune moment to crash down on my head. 

Think about it, she said.  Wallow in them.  Then see what you’re really made of and write about the things that delight you.

  • I left the house a little after 6:30 yesterday morning.  A hawk followed alongside my car for the briefest of moments before taking up his morning roost on one of the telephone poles.  There are few things on this planet more majestic than a bird of prey.  Even the scraggly, underfed hawks that we have here are just glorious to see. 

This hawk was watching a heard of pigmy donkeys grazing on a field terrace along side the highway.  I’d never seen donkeys there before.  Kinda cool. 

  • I finished up a teaching a class to drug offenders last night.  They were actually sort of engaging for once.  I enjoy stoners immensely one on one, but their group-think has been twanging my last nerve when I’ve taught this class recently.  This group was better.  Last night I taught about values, attitudes and behaviors.  Two of ‘em actually teared up.  Teared up!  Hell, if I’d had a plate I would have passed it and offered an invitation.  I couldda gotten at least one of ‘em to rededicate their life and the two guys in the back might’ve volunteered for foreign missions. 

Or, maybe not. 

  • I made a decision last week to pursue something I’ve needed to for a long time.  I have a building I want to someday rent/lease/own and put in an art studio.  I’m going to do it.  I’m even thinking about hanging out my shingle and doing a few photography jobs.  I’ll specialize in weddings of orphans.  I refuse to do weddings for people with mothers.  Mothers of brides have no place on a list of things that delight me.

I decided on a few small steps to begin with.  I’m actually going to try to sell some of my art.  Next weekend I am undertaking a very, very small beginning step and setting up a booth (card table and maybe a couple of easels) at a tiny town summer festival.  Just gonna wait and see what happens.  I can’t imagine there is a single person in the tiny town that needs/wants photos of graves or abandoned places.  And certainly not childish paintings of comic book themes, but who knows?  It’s a delightfully small first step. 

  • Jackson found me a new cemetery and Saturday we will take a little road trip and see how well it photographs.  That’s always delightful, even though he’s developed this new fascination with “Ghost Adventures” and now wanders the cemetery doing faux “EVP work”. 
  • I’m delighted that I live with a teenager who makes me laugh much more often than she makes me want to whack her upside the head with a heavy blunt instrument.  I’m delighted that we recently had this argument:

Kate:  “But!  I prayed in the shower!  I always pray while I’m taking a shower!”

Me:    “I don’t care.  You can pray again, out loud, with us.  It’s good for you!”

Kate:  “Argh! I don’t WANT to!  I don’t LIKE praying out loud!”

Me:    “What the hell is wrong with praying out loud?  Just quit whining a say a damn prayer, already.”

First she laughed.  Then she prayed. 

It was a crappy prayer.  But, what the hell, you can’t win ‘em all.


That’s it for now.  I’m kicking that list of irritations.  Kicking it hard, just to watch it fall.  I’ve got a lot of other things – more important things – to enjoy.  Who needs ya? 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Write, Eat, Post, Bathe


Facebook destroyed my writing.  I quit thinking in blog posts and started thinking in status updates.  My blog died.  I’ve tried to resurrect it a few times, without success. This time, hopefully, will be different.  This time I’m using Facebook for blog-spiration. 

Saturday night, a few of us were sitting around playing on Facebook.  It is a sad and pathetic way to spend your weekend evenings, but it was what it was and we kept ourselves entertained.  We’d all blogged together previously and all felt guilty for abandoning our blogs.  (Why do we feel so guilty for not writing?)  We decided to form a new group: Write, Eat, Post, Bathe.  So named, because that’s pretty much how we were spending our Saturday night. 

We’ll attempt to make our Facebook addiction work for us, instead of against us, starting with a weekly writing prompt. This is the first weekly prompt:

So, write about writing this week--what you expect, how it makes you feel, why you fell out of practice or kept up with it, doing it professionally vs for fun, hiding from your real life--whatever. Any format, from poetry to prose to shopping list. Just write. And post your link so we can share. Totally optional means no stress. Write whatever or shamelessly stay silent this week. Have fun, for pete's sake.

I think this will be a fairly easy prompt to start with.  So, here goes:

I write because I am a comment whore. 

The End. 

Saturday, July 09, 2011

What I Did Today


Not much.  That’s what. 

Jackson and I went on some minor adventuring this morning.  We returned with a Cigar Bush and Hackberry tree that he planted this afternoon.  That’s four trees we’ve added in the last three weeks.  Two more to go and I think we might be done.  We are working to fill up the vast prairie land that is our back yard. 

Give us a couple of years and there might be some actual shade back there.  Right now we have the biggest apricot tree that I have ever seen.  It provides some excellent shade, but it’s right at the back of the yard.  No help for the patio or the house. 

Spooky’s gardening advice of the day is to go out to the nursery and purchase as many Russian Olive trees as you can cart back to your casa.  These trees put off a fine, sticky mist of sap for about a month and a half in the early spring.  Don’t plant them anywhere near your car.  But after that, you get another month and a half of the most incredible fragrance.  It’s sweeter and smoother than the scent of a honeysuckle.  The two trees that we have scent our entire yard, front and back.  It’s incredible. 

Russian Olives are easily rooted from cuttings.  I have a few new ones trying to come up from roots that I’m fixing to whack off.  If you’re a local peep and you want the little branches, let me know. 

When I started this post I had great plans for it.  Well, not plans, actually, but I thought I would twist the idea of gardening into some sort of essay about the peacefulness of that pursuit and how a home should be a place of peace, both inside and out.  A sanctuary, a refuge, a retreat.  But that seemed like a lot of trouble.

So, instead, lets talk about comic books.  I’ve been reading The Saga of Solomon Kane.  He’s a “Puritan adventurer” wandering the 16th century world, doing the Lord’s work.  As long as that work involves rescuing naked women from vampires. 

Solomon Kane is a dour-faced pilgrim.  A religious man, his purpose is to eradicate evil where he finds it.  He likes to eradicate things with his sword.  In addition to evil, he finds naked women.  The poor man has to gird his loins extra tight to keep from being tempted by their feminine wiles. 

It is cracking me up. 

Solomon Kane is one of the creations of Robert E. Howard, who also created Conan the Barbarian.  He was from Cross Plains, Texas, which ain’t too far from here.  Kane was a pulp fiction character created in the late 1920’s and in the 1970’s the comic book version was created.  I love the art from the comic book.  Kane’s sour demeanor and pilgrim-y, pirate-y costume are a cool combination.  Plus it makes him look sort of hot so that the naked women he encounters are more than happy to provide the temptations that test his faith and purpose.

I think I know what sort of churches Robert Howard grew up in.