Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Memie

My friend Holly did a mild sort of meme on her site, and since she had 80 comments (What are you trading for them, Whore?) I felt like mine were extraneous at the time. So here they are now.

1) What are you reading?
I am reading Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto by Chuck Klosterman. He writes a really great criticism of romance in America with a theory he calls the “Lloyd Dobler Effect.” Here’s an excerpt:

“Whenever I meet dynamic, nonretarded Americans, I notice that they all seem to share a single unifying characteristic: the inability to experience the kind of mind-blowing, transcendent romantic relationship they perceive to be a normal part of living. And someone needs to take the fall for this. So instead of blaming no one for this (which is kind of cowardly) or blaming everyone (which is kind of meaningless), I’m going to blame John Cusack.”

2) If you had to eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Probably grits...with cheese. It’s good for breakfast, lunch or dinner, soaks up excess alcohol when necessary, and goes well with most foods.

3) If no-one would ever know about it and you’d feel no raging guilt or remorse—and also if you could do it without splattering blood on yourself and totally ruining your shoes—who would you remove from the planet forever?
The little piddly people who have no real effect on my life, yet still make me feel small or hostile or incredibly impotent. People who cut you off and then give YOU the finger. People who act like you’re an idiot because you didn’t understand something the first time. Rude salespeople who make you feel helpless. Those are the people I spend the most time hating.

4) What are your most favorite and most despised words?
I like P words: Pamplemousse, Pantoufles, Pantalones! I also like Protean. Sabrina’s favorite words are “necrotizing fasciitis.” Hmmm, I think “Panties” or “moist” are my two least favorite words. Obviously, used in conjunction, my head would explode and make a big smelly mess.

5) Please describe your hair.
Boring.

MemeMemeMee.....I've been tagged!

Marcheline also tagged me. However, I’ve altered her Meme just a tad to include one thing that’s just the opposite of what she’s asked.

One thing I won’t do:
1) Pass on things: a chain letter, Meme or an STD. Gossip on the other hand...

Seven things to do:
1) Write thank you notes
2) Train the dog
3) Buy a shower gift
4) Felt some knitted flowers for a very late Christmas present
5) Pitch a story
6) Interview 80 people for my dad’s memoirs
7) Get my engagement ring insured

One thing I can’t do:

1) Anything on time

Seven things I can:
1) Walk on stilts
2) Knit a scarf in a day
3) Move my eyes separately
4) Run very far
5) Make ravioli
6) Remember what I was eating at any point in my personal history
7) Go without sleep for long periods of time

One thing that attracted my mate to me:
1) A tranquilizer dart and a stout length of rope

Seven things that attract me to my mate:
1) Dimples
2) Can convert fractions IN HIS HEAD
3) Curls
4) Speaks French
5) Makes me laugh
6) Can roll pasta
7) Did I mention he has dimples?

One book I despise:
1) I Am Charlotte Simmons

Seven books I love:
1) Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
2) The Lord of the Rings
3) The Corrections
4) A Scot’s Quair
5) Jitterbug Perfume
6) The Awakening
7) The Malcontent

One thing I wish I said:
1) Sweet cracker sandwich!

One thing I wish people would stop saying:
1) Like

Seven things I say:
1) Fuck
2) Holy Jebus
3) Sweet Baby Moses
4) Ready...Okay
5) The Horror
6) I’m so tired
7) I’m so hungry

Seven movies I’ve loved:
1) The Red Violin
2) Box of Moonlight
3) Bottlerocket
4) Out of Africa
5) Bring It On
6) Bringing Up Baby
7) Lord of the Rings - all

Seven people not to tag:
1) All of them

Monday, February 27, 2006

Cholera

If any of you are looking for a new neighbor, I will sell you mine cheap. She's a lacto pescetarian, has really good shoes and comes with typhus.

I just sent her a text message: "I hate you," because apparently her generosity applies not only to coffee and emergency cocktail dresses, but to disease as well. I guess I have to take the bad with the good, but I am not feeling particularly charitable at the moment.

A porcupine is living in my froat, my nose bears a strange resemblance to 1984 disco, my ears are crackling and my head hurts. Whine, suffer, whine.

And I just called my friend to let her know that A.S. and I have decided to keep Beulah, and I think she was both relieved and incredibly sad. It's awful to have to give up your dog, especially on top of everything else that's happende. And she said that her three year old is having a tough time, asking where his dada is, where his dog is, and wants to know why they're staying with his grandparents and can't go home. She said it just finally started to sink in yesterday that this is her life now, not just a really bad dream. I wish it were.

I've been thinking about her a whole lot this week and last, and I just hope she can find a way to forgive her husband for doing what he did. Understanding is really too much to ask, since apparently her husband couldn't even achieve that. But maybe acceptance and forgiveness, maybe those are what leads to healing for her and for their family.

She told me, "I'm having to figure out who I am now. Because for so long, he was a part of me, and now, this is what my life is like. I'm not going to wake up from this." I hope she knows that it won't always be this hard, or hurt this much. And that she's not alone. And that wherever he is, her husband owes her big. I hope she can forgive him and let go. She's really angry with him and misses him so much. Now, when she needs comfort most, he can't offer it. I can't imagine how I would feel if I couldn't press my nose into A.S.'s neck and smell his gypsumy smell and get scratched by his whiskers and hold his hand and hear him breathe. You marry with such certainty, such hope, and the expectation of a partnership to face anything and everything. How does anyone learn how to walk alone again after that?

Foul Weather Friends

A.S. and I had our first party on Saturday, a big oyster roast on Wadmalaw Island...in the driving rain. It didn’t seem to deter anyone, however, and we had quite a jolly crowd clustered under the tents. My sister came out with the Bean, who I toted around like a purse for the rest of the party, which really confused people (My sister and I look a lot alike, but most people know that she’s the one with the child). A.S. had a fine time seeing all of his friends and drinking keg beer and not slaving away in the studio all day long. I love seeing him laugh with his childhood friends, because it makes him so happy. And when he’s happy, he dimples. And when he dimples, I swoon.

Of course, after freezing our patooties off for five hours, we drove our half drowned carcasses back home and shivered under the down comforter with the gas up on high for about two hours. It was heavenly—you know when you sleep so hard, your body feels like it weighs 600 pounds and produces about 200 degrees worth of heat? That must be what a cat feels like 24 hours a day.

About four friends showed up that night for shrimp pasta, which I over-garlicked by about four cloves. But I made this soupy peach and almond-cinnamon-cookie bake for dessert, based on a grand recipe my friend Al sent me last week. I still have a ton of frozen peaches from last summer, and this was a perfect way to cook them up on a frigid, shitty day. I think ginger snaps would have been better, or the amaretti cookies the recipe called for, but they were unavailable. But with brown sugar and cinnamon and almond extract-laced whipped cream, it was quite heavenly, especially served in my happy little ramekins.

Then yesterday, A.S. and I woke up far far far too early (7 a.m.) and headed to the beach in the chill wind and drizzle for some surfing. Or he did. I walked Beulah from the Wash Out down to the pier and back, about three miles. And because of the GD beach renourishment, I’d been walking on the hard pack and all of a sudden was knee deep in a muddy sinkhole, lost both clogs and drenched my wooly socks and trouser hems in sand and salt water. Grrrr. Fortunately, my feet are sort of impervious to cold, so I just walked barefoot all morning, but still, it was 47 degrees, and my irritation with OCRM knew no bounds. Beach renourishment never works, so why in the hell do they need to mess with natural ecosystems and currents just for a couple of snowbird homeowners who shouldn’t have built beyond the dunes in the first place? Snarl.

After A.S. peeled himself out of his wetsuit, we had a scrumptious and extremely large breakfast at the Lost Dog Café and headed home for a midmorning “nap” before I had to send him back to the Upstate and school. God, I detest Clemson, horrible, ghastly place. Only 74 more days until he graduates though, and believe me, we’re both counting.

But we do have his spring break to look forward to. Three days of uninterrupted tranquility on Edisto Island! Hurrah! Crabbing, shrimping, boating, fishing, eating, lounging, playing with our dog. Beulah adores A.S., by the way, and the feeling is mutual. He actually insisted on driving her by to meet his parents on the way back from the beach yesterday! So I suppose I need to call my friend to let her know we’ll be keeping her and to figure out all of her medical needs and so forth. I also need to fork out some dough for dog training, because I do NOT enjoy keeping my trashcan on the counter and short sheeting my own bed so she won’t wallow in it.

One thing about Beulah that I quite enjoy is that she has developed an immediate and passionate dislike of the Sexy Attorney’s cur dog, Daisy (the one who vomited in the back of A.S.’s car on the way to the proposal). She likes Bella, Amanda’s border collie, however Daisy gives the appearance of covert and sly lurking and natural shiftiness, and Beulah cannot abide her. She lit out after her three times on Saturday, and Daisy about peed herself, which made her twice as nervous. You could just see Beulah thinking, “I’m gonna git that varmint if it’s the last thing I do!” And believe me, no dog could look more varminty than Daisy. She has a giant squirrel tail and little beady possumy eyes and tiny foxy feet. Varmint through and through. Although Daisy has turned out far better than I ever expected, I can still kind of relate to Beulah’s line of reasoning. She just looks like a bad dog.

So A.S. and I are a family already, albeit with a pup out of wedlock. I told him he had to marry me and give Beulah a name!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Dog for Dinner

A friend of mine from boarding school sent me the cutest photos of her pregnant self... WHICH IS JUST KIND OF WEIRD AND WRONG?! BUT GREAT AT THE SAME TIME! When I think of all the times I listened to her snorting lines and chasing them with a bong hit in college...and now, there she is, burgeoning with the future leader of liberal America. I'm really going to have to get her a stunning present, something in smocked linen that she'll have to IRON a lot. Heh. I'm so cruel.

She was the one that got married in June in Quebec, and now, here she is, less than a year later, pregnant. That scares the shit out of me. A.S. and I have been doubling up on birth control, because the last thing I want to be is knocked up on my wedding day, not only because I intend to consume vast quantities of sangria, but because honeymoons are for relaxation, not fertilization. Gross.

So A.S. and I are going to Napa for our honeymoon. I think we’re staying at the Honor Mansion in Healdsburg, which is less touristy than other parts of the wine country. We’ll have our own private porch with hot tub, access to the pool, couples’ massages in the garden pavilion, French toast for breakfast, wine tastings, and don’t forget the CHEESE! God, I can’t wait. I wish we were going now. We’re also taking our surfboards, because we’ll be spending a few days in San Francisco (hopefully, our future home) on the way back.

We have our second meeting with the minister next month. Did I TELL you what he said during the first one? (The...horror...oh...the...horror) Apparently he once gave a sermon at Foxcroft, my old boarding school. in the 50s or 60s, which he remembered with grim clarity. All the little girls in the front row flapped their legs open and shut to flash their panties at him. And, the minister, he flapped his legs and said "panties" to me.

TO ME!!!

I think I threw up in my mouth a little bit. Curse those girls, and curse Miss Charlotte, the school founder, for letting the little tarts sit in the front row. I hope they all got beaten with wet brooms and made to lie on the snow-covered sleeping porches with no blankets. Let me tell you, I clamped my thighs together and crossed my legs at the ankle with deep concentration for the rest of the counseling session. THE HUMANITY! A.S. thought that was hysterical, and you should have SEEN the stink eye I gave him.

Anyway, I'm taking the minister and his wife and A.S. on a picnic next time around, out to the country church where we're getting married. Hopefully a little wine and some very good cheese will make him forgive me for having attended that slutty school. Is it wrong to bribe a man of God?

In other news, I have a dog. A brown one that looks a lot like this, mainly because this dog, Belle, is her mother.



Belle belongs to my parents, and Beulah (I didn’t freakin name her that, okay?) was born in my parents’ kitchen on Christmas Eve about seven years ago. If you’ll recall from my last blog, a friend of mine lost her husband, and she has decided she can’t keep the two babies and Beulah in the same house, since Beulah isn’t so keen on the children. So I’ve been wanting a Boykin Spaniel for ages, albeit a puppy, but now that the heavens seem to have listened, how can I refuse to take her on, just because she’s older?

Oh, and bad.

Did I mention that she’s The Devil? This morning, while I was gone running for an hour, she got in the trash, dragged out my knitting, ate some chapstick, dragged all the Tupperware off the counter, jumped in the bed, pulled back the comforter and knocked off the pillows and wallowed around, I guess, judging from the fur. It must not have been comfortable enough, because she was reclining on the couch when I got home. And the damned dog actually bared her teeth at me when I screeched at her. Next time, I’m turning the couch upside down (it’s wicker) on her and making her sit under it for at least 15 minutes. That might work with the trashcan too, come to think of it. At least she’s starting to look ashamed of herself when I find her nub-deep in the trash...which is much more satisfying than shrieking at a dog who merely looks annoyed that she’s been interrupted. If she has to sit there with a trashcan on her head for half an hour, she might not find it so intriguing.

Anyway, A.S. hasn’t met her yet, and I’m desperate to break these bad habits before he comes home on Friday. I want him to let her stay with us, but there’s no way he’s going to like a B-A-D dog.

I also hosted my Sixth Annual I Hate Valentine’s Day Dinner Party Extravaganza this past weekend. Holly from Nothing But Bonfires was there, as were Sean, and Pete from the magazine, and all my neighbors and close friends, about 12 of us in all. This year, I made it a little easier on myself and had everyone bring an hors d’oeuvre. I can’t believe what a difference it made! And I actually had time to sit around and drink some wine with people rather than dishing up food the whole time. I think it’d be different if I had a larger kitchen, but mine is so small, I have to do everything one at a time, which takes longer. I made, with The Wench’s help (A.S. was at school working on a big project), three different kinds of ravioli: crab with red pepper and basil; butternut squash with ricotta and cinnamon; and Swiss chard with golden raisins, pine nuts, kalamata olives and garlic. They were so divine, but (surprise, surprise) the squash was my favorite. We also had tomatoes provencal and mesclun salad. Then we had chocolate espresso pots du crème for dessert. THAT was fabulous, and unbelievably easy...although the water bath was a pill. I highly recommend them. There’s something about individual desserts in their own ramekins that cheers people so.

Well, this blog is very long, and interesting to no one but me, so I’ll quit now.
Tralala

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Socks = Love

I’m in the Upstate today, where I can work and be near A.S. for Valentine’s. We’ve never been in the same city on the actual day before, so this should be fun. We’re going to a taqueria in Central, where we will eat too much and feel very bad and have lots of fun. I got his Valentine’s presents at lunch—after getting hopelessly lost about three times. He’s always accusing me of stealing his Smart Wool socks, so I thought it would be neato to get him a pair of red ones that are easily identifiable. So I bought him red socks (because he makes my toes curl), a camping coffee filter (because he makes the best coffee ever)
and a pair of capilene boxers (because he’s got a hot ass).

I was going to get him a camping stove instead of the filter (because he sets my heart on fire), but that would have also made my Amex set on fire.

He made me this fantastic T-shirt. It’s red with a photo of a Belted Galloway cow on the front, with this kickass lightning streak around the photos. (We’re having our wedding reception on a Belted Galloway farm.) But he had to get the T-shirt, find the photo online, print it on this iron-on material and then put it together all by himself. I can’t believe he even thought of it! Apparently his whole studio got really into it too, and provided irons and helped cut out the photo and everything. He said they were sick of working on their models. Heh.

In another, less happy note, my sister told me some devastatingly unhappy news that is going to make me really sad every time I think about it. One of my sister’s close friends, now and when we were all growing up, lost her husband yesterday. He committed suicide.

My sister told me while I was driving, and I burst into tears and nearly wrecked. I still feel sick and faint at the idea. I don’t know any of the details at all, but I do know that our friend had a baby five months ago, and a son who is almost four. She had been through some postpartum depression, but was really recovering well. I never knew that her husband had ever been depressed, and I feel so terrible that no one knew what he was going through. It’s so unbelievably sad that we will never see his happy face and enormous smile again, or hear him laugh or watch him surf or hold his kids.

And I also hate him for what he’s done to his family. How his wife will have to tell their three year old over and over again that Daddy isn’t coming home. How she is suddenly without the person she always imagined would be her partner. How their youngest son will never know him at all, other than this dark stain on their past. They will always feel this mixture of guilt and anger, wishing they’d loved him more and also wishing that their love had been enough for him. Fuck him for doing that to them. How could he?

It makes me want to grab A.S. by the collar and shake him and make him promise me, SWEAR to me, that no matter how bad it ever gets, that he won’t do that...to me, to himself, to his family.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Perma-Snooze

Gorss. I just sneezed oatmeal everywhere. Ugh. Shitty run, no sleeep, sore from yoga last night (massive butt cramp in the middle of extensive leg up in the air thingy pose). And was up very late doing effing loists with my mother for the THIRD (ow, too much emotion) night in a row. I have to make certain not to invite divorced people to the same parties as their exes, and make sure brides don't get invited to parties right before their own weddings, and that hostesses of parties don't get invited to showers, but definitely to at least two cocktail parties. Crhist. I imagine A.S.' night wasn't much better, since he had the laser cutterr reserved at 3 a.m., since with a model due tomorrow, everyone had scheduled it before him. Poor boy.

I. Want. To. Go. Back. To Bed.

All. Day.

So. Tired.

And it's only 7:45.

Blech.