Sunday, July 31, 2005

hallelujah: the ipod is working and loaded

Today, after a lot of sleep, relaxing, excellent weather, iced coffee and good food, T and I decided to take another stab at the installation of the ipod.

We did it!

You know what the problem was? I didn't have itunes 4.9. Also, when I decided to give the USB port on my laptop one more try on Friday, the sucker worked! I didn't need the damn adapter from Circuit City. Needless to say, you know where I'm going tomorrow.... Customer Service, baby...

So all it took was rereading the instructions without having a panic attack and seriously taking into account every stupid thing. As suspected, all frustration evaporated from my mind as I sat on the sofa and shared the earplugs with T and later when I put the ipod in the back pocket of my jeans and danced around the room, singing to T as he studiously worked.

Needless to say, there will be a good deal of furtive dancing on the Q platform from now on. All you kids were right: this will revolutionize my life.

Friday, July 29, 2005

the return of riri thibodeaux and other exciting things

My darling RiRi is returning tomorrow from 15 days in Italy. I'm sure she'll be tan and chic. Tuesday we resume our dinner dates. Thank God for that.

Today was crazy busy, but D came to work and had lunch with me. I got to show her the new job and she even met my boss. We went to MoMA and applied our sweet talk analysis to the Cezanne/Pissaro show: Pissaro = soft focus lens; Cezanne = light and geometry.

Then we zipped through Lee Friedlander which wasn't any better the second time. I am not so impressed.

We high-tailed it to the Sculpture Garden for a couple hours of girl talk. I think I need more in-person girl talk in my life. Speaking of which, we are gonna go dancing next week. Sloppy delicious, if you're reading this, I'm emailing you this weekend. Let's make it happen.

After D left to go to Penn Station for a day trip to the Garden State, I read about Antonioni's BLOW UP which I watched last summer with RJ and T. Then I went to the Folk Art Museum which I'd never done before. I'm going back again soon. I loved the quilts most of all because they reminded me so much of my mother. She is finishing a quilt for me right now. What is amazing is that she's been working on it since I was about eight years old. Neither of us can remember when she began making it, but it is a creation of love.

I was so tired from running around this morning and doing things that I fell asleep on the subway. I feel like I have a summer cold coming on but it could be that my immune system is down thanks to the lack of sleep and stress of the past week. I need to take better care of myself. Hopefully, that begins this weekend.

I mean, I need to rest up for an upcoming night of dancing.

franic friday

not be confused with manic monday, frantic friday involves waking up and wondering if you have actually worked fourteen days straight or just five. It also involves coming to work and trying to do seventeen things at once.

I guess this is what they meant in the interview when they asked how I perform under pressure and how well I multi-task.

At least the work day is ending soon. Skipping breakfast and drinking iced coffee gives one a sort of nervous energy that is unnecessary for any and every situation.

(meanwhile the ipod crisis looms)

Thursday, July 28, 2005

as suspected

I needed an adapter. Damn, why didn't anyone tell me about this. Ipod, you better be worth it. At least I live near a Circuit City and could walk there and back in less than ten minutes. And I got some water at the corner bodega and the guy at the counter told me I look like I'm 16. I think he was wondering why I was out at dusk. Good to know the guys there are not just checking me out; they're also looking out for me.

And I know I shouldn't be annoyed. Look, I live within walking distance of a Circuit City. I know how lucky I am to be living this life. Someone on the subway was wearing the scent of gardenias today and it brought me back to May Crowning at Sacred Heart in New Orleans. I can't believe I've gone from that darling pre-school existence to working and living in New York City. There is always a spring in my step even when I'm exhausted. I'm here. And I have so many books to read, so much to see, so many people to speak with, so many movies to see, and so much more than that.

So I guess I can live with the fact that my computer does not have a USB 2.0 port. Technology is a pain. You always expect it to work like magic so when it doesn't, one is at a total loss.

In other news, Thursday delivery of "The New Yorker?" This doesn't give me much time to read this one before the next one arrives as it should on Tuesday.

Complain, complain. I know, all of you who are not here think I have gotten soft. But it's almost the weekend. I promise to be nothing but smiles... even if itunes baffles my mind.

the ipod has landed

Yes, I have my ipod. Tonight I will attempt to do laundry, feed the happy ipod with music and knit. The only reading that is allowed are ipod manuals and magazines. Okay, I might sneak in a book, but only novels!

I hope feeding the ipod will not be difficult. Any suggestions for a nascent ipod user?

shift in the weather

I woke this morning to a cool breeze from my window. It was so delicious that I had to snuggle in for another precious five minutes of sleep. If only it could be like this all year long.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

hitting the wall

OK. I'm too tired to do anything. The thunderstorms gave me pause. Also, considering that I felt like the walking dead at 5 pm, I don't think I'm in the best condition to wander my way from the East Village back to Brooklyn at 11 pm (at least) tonight.

So much for all my plans. I think I was a little too ambitious this week.

war trash duchess ex-girlfriend seeks ipod

Tonight, I'm going to see Ha Jin read at summerstage in Central Park which means I have to leave work ON TIME. No more of this, "I'll just get some more done" foolishness.

I'm reading Ha Jin's "War Trash" at the moment in between all the Holocaust history I've been devouring. You know my taste: POW stories, concentration camps, Vichy France. Nothing but good times. I would have read more this morning on the subway had it not taken me until 42nd street to begin to cool off. Seriously, I sat on the train, listened to Wilco's "Being There" and stared into space as the air conditioning and Gorilla iced coffee worked their magic.

I hope Ha Jin hates this heat and decides to keep his reading short because I have two cultural outings this evening. Later, I'm going to see my brother's band Duchess play at the Lit Lounge in the East Village.

In the meanwhile, my brother's ex (circa 1998-1999) emailed me to say she's moving from UVA to Brooklyn and can we hang out. Any girl who takes kooky pictures of herself in bathrooms across Europe, studied architecture and art history and loves rubber ducks is my kind of gal. Of course we're gonna hang out.

The ipod has not arrived yet. I am worried that I'm going to be all psyched when it arrives tomorrow and then I'll realize that I need 16 different doo-dads in order to link it to my dell inspiron laptop. Please let me know if I will need to visit SoHo's hellish apple store in the near future. I bought this laptop in September 2003 so I hope all the plugs and ports are up to date.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

you know you're a single girl when...

you know you're a single girl when... you go to Target and this is what you leave with:

8"X8" pyrex dish
clorox bleach pen
joy dish soap
dove body wash
"gilmore girls" season 1 dvd
"sex and the city" season 1 dvd
"clean shower spray"
Lindt dark chocolate truffles

It's a crying shame that I can't buy wine at Target. I have to mention that I was drawn in by the purses, but I restrained myself. And I didn't even go near the clothing. In case you didn't know, Target has its fair share of gym clothes that look like American Apparel without costing as much as American Apparel. And don't give me the BS about sweatshops. That skeevy guy sexually harasses everybody who works there. Or just grosses them out with his face.

I never promised you a rose garden: jane to leave jane

Jane Pratt is stepping down from Jane magazine on September 30, 2005. "Whatever," I say. Jane magazine never was Sassy magazine -- Pratt's feminist contribution to the maintenance of female sanity between from 1988 to 1994. But let's put it this way: my snotty self actually read Jane from time to time (and not just because I could get it for free at work... I had a lot of free periodicals) as opposed to magazines that I don't even so much as register as anything more than fodder for provocative pre-school collages.

I still have all my copies of Sassy magazine and I will probably always keep them. I really wanted to meet Sassy editor (and current editor of Elle Girl) Christina Kelly during my time at Elle magazine, but I didn't want to lose the image I created at age 14 of a sarcastic, smart woman who didn't have to apologize for speaking her mind. I'm sure she's lovely, but I think the image is all I'll ever need.

I saw Jane Pratt once at work and I also wanted to go up to her and thank her for Sassy, but I didn't want to be another freaky twentysomething gushing at her feet.

Besides, isn't it more important to think of what Sassy encouraged rather than worship at the feet of the former editors? I wonder what Pratt will go on to do... Aside from having twins.

Who else read Sassy? Share your memories.

Monday, July 25, 2005


a note of warning:
while you may think it is enough to gulp some water, slather on sunscreen every two hours and wear Jackie O sunglasses, this is clearly not enough sun protection.

Saturday, I thought I had a sinus headache, but by 7 pm, I realized it had to be something worse. I figured it must be sunstroke. I immediately drank about 2 liters of water and put an ice bag on top of my head for the duration of a film.

also, do not watch "The Manchurian Candidate" (2004) while suffering from sunstroke. it makes you scared and paranoid.

So keep drinking water all day. Don't kid yourself. Sunstroke is not just something your mother uses as a threat.

Friday, July 22, 2005

i take comfort in what exactly?

In the spirit of curiosity I wondered what would happen if I showed up at the subway with a ton of stuff. Seeing as this is the first day the NYPD is free to search bags on the subway and that I'm spending the weekend in Morningside Heights (everyone's favorite weekend destination) I brought three bags (clothes, knitting project, requisite New Yorker mag, 700 page manuscript and another book in case I finish all of that before I get to work), plus iced coffee.

Result: despite much police presence earlier this week, there were no police in sight. HOWEVER, there were more crazy people than usual in the 7th avenue subway stop today which causes me to wonder, "Is our neighborhood 'homeless guy' actually NYPD undercover?" How exciting would that be? I like his new co-worker. The usual guy was upstairs just past the turnstyles greeting everyone as they made their way down to the platforms and the other guy was dancing on the Manhattan bound platform and howled when he could hear the Q train approaching.

I like this kind of counterterrorism.

As suspected, my white-pseudo latina, uber-girly status allows me to get off scot free even though I look like I'm heading off to 3 months of summer camp in North Carolina.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

today's quiz (or i figured out how to post pictures)

this is a picture from last summer, but I love the expression on my friend Becky's face.

Guess what she is talking about:

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

come as you are?

Today I spent my lunch hour in line for a ticket to see LAST DAYS at MoMA tonight.

While there, I couldn't help, but wonder if I'd see 13 year old versions of my friends. Kool-Aid dyed hair, Doc Martins, safety pins, baby barrettes, patches on backpacks, Chuck Taylors, babydoll dresses, girls with the word "SLUT" written on their arms, black nail polish.

Yeah. None of that.

What did I see? Lots of old white men (and by old I mean "older than my father" old) and yuppie white men. Oh and some uptight, mean looking women in their 40s who looked like someone dragged them out of the carpool line in Darien, CT.

What is that?

I was the closest thing in line to a refugee from the grunge years and I am 27, wearing a cropped linen blazer for work with jeans that are free of holes.

It was so depressing. There were also no cute, anorexic, anemic looking hungry boys. So sad. There were also no cardigans. Kurt would be so disappointed.

Look, Gus Van Sant, this is a reminder of why the man killed himself: he's a commodity for all of us to read about in the Sunday Styles.

knitting knitting

i'm making another sweater. i made some serious progress on it tonight. if only i had more time spent in the company of my awesome knitting group. I would crank out a sweater a month if I had one night a week with them. maybe i'll try to assign one night a week as knitting night starting this fall - with or without the women... preferably with the women.

but yes, i had my knitting group tonight with liz, abby and alexa. i would say it's our "stitch n bitch" but we aren't whiny ladies. mostly we just catch up, talk yarn, swap dating stories, discuss articles we've read lately, books and movies, too. abby is housesitting so we met in Carroll Gardens instead of the Upper West Side. This was very nice for me as it took all of 5 minutes to get home in a cab which cost about the same amount as a lunch special at Mango Thai. Not much. I am happy to pay $4 more than the cost of a subway ride in order to get home directly.

as soon as it gets cooler, i'm gonna host knitting and make jambalaya for all. right now the idea of standing over a stove in my apartment seems like masochism.

i'm not into kitchen s&m

Monday, July 18, 2005

this and that

For my next book club, we're reading Brick Lane. I can't wait. I've been wanting to read it for some time having heard great things from RJ and wanting to compare it to Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake.

I'm currently listening to Rachael Yamagata's Happenstance. I bought it a couple months back after this Rachel recommended it. I wasn't so crazy about it, but didn't dismiss it entirely. I left it on the shelf and picked it up again recently to give it another try on my commute to work. I really like it now. Go figure. Maybe I'm just in a different state of mind. I really love the first two songs and also "Under My Skin" which is a great song about a girl's unsuspected attraction to another woman. So nice to have a love song that's smart and isn't about crying over someone.

I'm also reading The Atlantic's Fiction Issue. I bought it mostly because I wanted to read the essays and tid bits from writers. Mary Gordon and Rick Moody both spoke at Bryn Mawr during my tenure there. I really admire their work and their thoughtfulness about writing. I reviewed Curtis Sittenfeld's Prep for the Times-Picayune months and months ago. I was more intrigued by the story behind the story than the actual novel itself. I think Sittenfeld is a great writer, but I loathed Lee Fiora. Liz says everyone can identify in some way with Lee and maybe that is what got to me. I had no sympathy for the parts of me I saw in Lee. They were the moments of self-pity that I had at the beginning of college when I felt like a total outsider.

When I voiced this at book club tonight, it was met with: "YOU!? An outsider?! You had more friends than anyone," from my fellow Bryn Mawr alumnae.

And maybe I did. I always had a million friends, but that doesn't mean that I didn't feel like the Southern girl there on considerable financial aid. I felt like I had to prove my heritage and my class. It was a struggle that I kept to myself. I was always too proud to ask for a better grade or an extension. Maybe I should have listened to myself a little more, but I had too much dignity for that.

Ugh, maybe I am more like Lee than I thought.

Well, Sittenfeld is probably going to write a sequel. We'll see if Lee improves with age.

evidence: maybe i really am a grown up

I had an exciting celebrity run-in at the Met a couple weeks back. Given my celebrity interests, you could guess I saw Judith Butler, Jhumpa Lahiri, Britney Spears, Ben Gibbard, Janet Maslin and not be off the mark.

As it stands I ran into a certain NPR contributor and writer who is currently writing a column for the NYT along with her twin sister and nephew.

The one person I thought I should share this sighting is someone I haven't seen or spoken to in a few years. I didn't even have his email address anymore because he'd changed jobs and moved to a new city. I'm lucky he works at a daily paper so all it took was the aid of Google to find him.

This friend introduced me to blogging on a personal level (don't know if he ever returned to blogging... I also didn't offer details regarding crazy 8s.) and the band Death Cab for Cutie. I was first attracted to him because of his Saucony sneakers and "Punk Planet" magazines. I got stuck on him thanks to 8 hour coffee talks at CC's and he was the person with whom i stayed up past 5 am only to awake at 8 am to face 9/11 with a cup of coffee that couldn't possibly help me take in the fact of this national tragedy and the fact that i was never going to date him.

(needless to say, i took the inability to date a lot better than i would have otherwise... and hey, i was going away to Dartmouth in a matter of days)

but a number of things made our friendship ridiculously difficult to maintain. we didn't end things on bad terms, though. time just has a way of reprioritizing crushes (because they'll always end up being a crush even if they become a friend at some point. let's be honest) off the list.

but I wrote him about seeing Sarah Vowell, thinking of him, wondering how he was doing and how Boston is treating him and his girlfriend. He wrote back with the same voice as ever. Still running, still hates the cold, still hating change.

Happy birthday tomorrow, MG. It's good to be in touch. Here's to another marathon coffee chat someday. If only I could be on such good terms with all past crushes.

in the hopes of mellowing out

so I've been on a marriage tirade as of late. please forgive me. i guess "marriage tirades" are the "boyfriend tirades" of 2005. What can you do?

Reacting to most things that displease me, I tend to run a cycle of outrage followed by much writing, self-censoring, writing that surpasses what was written before the censoring and then a moment best categorized as "whatever."

This weather is truly unbearable. I am trying not to cave in and use the miserable weather as a license to drink iced coffee everyday. Thankfully, New York is not New Orleans and there is no PJ's coffee & tea shop on 7th avenue.

Work is a calming influence, mostly. I love getting things done. I love making lists and crossing things off. I love getting the opportnuity to meet interesting people.

Best of all, work offers air conditioning. I don't even mind three 40+ minute rides on the subway in one day if it means I can sit and read in air conditioning.

I got a teapot this weekend from RJ. I'm very excited to use it... for tea over ice. I am looking forward to blasting my fan this evening (post-book club), cleaning up my room and sitting with the Atlantic's fiction issue drinking tea while waiting for Nerb to return home and chat with me.

My life is mighty sweet. All you kids can get married, go on missions, save the world, etc. I'll just sit around and enjoy the rest of my twenties. I spent all of my teens and early to mid twenties slaving away to find a happy medium of life, love, family, home, stability, career and I found it. And if you're jealous, consider how i got to this point.

Also, I want to see Stacyann Chin perform. Anyone interested?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

it's summer so i must be listening to wilco

Yeah, all I've been listening to lately is "Being There." I guess I am just feeling the pull of heat and the ache to be on the road. I just had a birthday which means the summer is all downhill from here. Once I hit my birthday, the summer just flies. So I need to enjoy it while it's still here.

Which means I tend to listen to a lot of Wilco. Maybe if I'm really maudlin I'll listen to Beth Orton "daybreaker."

But yeah, I could stand to listen to "Do You Miss Me," "I Got You (at the end of the century)" and "What's the World Got in Store?" for a long time. Work has me in a serious schedule. New York is feeling like a pair of broken in boots. Still hip, but I definitely run into people from all facets of life on the subway. I'm kissing people hello on the street so I must have made my way around the block a couple times.

And maybe that's just it: I have been around the block and back again. I'm not a green kid who just turned 18 and is packing her bags for college. Yet I am getting more and more freaked out by all my friends getting married. It isn't getting any easier to stomach listening to the girls I used to help with their homework talk about bridesmaid dresses, fighting with their mothers about caterers...

It's just weird. I mean, Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise is only marginally more weird than this... So that's the standard we're looking at, kids.

Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever get married. I love living alone. I love nights entirely by myself drinking a glass of wine, listening to Wilco, puttering around my room.

I just can't see myself having time to do things like consider:
church or civil ceremony?

And more shit I can't even think of because this is so beyond the realm of my imagination.

Is this because I just can't do this? Because the idea of being a wife seems so foreign to me?

And for someone who cannot stand the thought of being responsible for pets can hardly think of being in possession of a husband.

I think the day these terms don't scare me is the day I might actually contemplate marriage. Why does it freak me out so much?

I think it has a lot to do with the fact that marriage just is not high on the list of things I need and want to do with my life in the next five years. More and more, I'm recognizing all the things that are more important and interesting to me and I want to focus on that rather than validating my relationship with the state and society.

Whew. That was a mouthful, but it felt good to write it all down.


Coming down from the birthday fun is rough. I am completely restless at work and am having an incredibly hard time concentrating on my duties. I am listening to Smetana string quartets and struggling to read and think about long-range projects. Hopefully, I can unwind a bit tonight and have a productive day tomorrow. I can already feel that today is going to be a labor intensive.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

happy birthday to me

happy 27 to me.
happy 27 to me.
happy 27 to me.
happy 27 to me.

may there be years of iced coffee and tote bags in my future.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

sisterhood of the traveling pants

I went to see Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants with my best gf in NYC yesterday. Despite arriving from different boroughs, we were on the same 1 train. Can we say best friends or what?

Anyway, need you ask, I cried through the end of the film. Me and female friendship? We're like this. Well, lately maybe not so much. Having a bf gives you an automatic best friend to spend the weekend with, rent movies, get breakfast, walk home, etc. And a great deal of my female friends have been too busy getting married to visit. And the single lady friends are all off in foreign countries that are not accessible by JetBlue (yeah, Republic of Georgia, Niger, France, Greece... Not really available by direct flight with direct TV and blue chips).

When I learned that my boyfriend's youngest sister (who is attending Columbia in the fall) planned on moving to NYC this summer rather than spend her last summer after high school at home, I was really surprised. For me, the summer of '96 was one of the best times in my life. There was no more high school anxiety, all of us were thrilled to leave New Orleans for our new lives in new states, but we were so happy to just be together. There were endless coffee sessions, lunches, sleepovers, movies, etc.

That core set of friends are mostly married (and engaged) now with the exception of me, Minh (who moved away to Austin and I haven't seen since '96) and Sudha. Watching that movie reminded me of the sisterhood we shared. Being a bridesmaid at Kari's wedding brought us back together for a bit of time, but it's harder and harder to hear from one another much less hang out casually like we used to.

In a world that supposedly has instantaneous communication, why is it so hard to have a good conversation? Maybe it's too easy. You can always delay a phone call or an email when you know you can reach them anytime.

"Anytime" is the new "no time."

I cried a lot while watching the movie because I could see how it would end up. The two stereotypically pretty girls would go on to find their boyfriends and ditch their other girlfriends because they "wouldn't understand what it's like to be in a relationship." And the other two girls would do their own thing, find themselves and carve out a new place until being asked to be bridesmaids almost ten years later.

Ouch. That hurts, but it's somewhat true.

Watching that movie reminded me of the history and good times I shared with my high school (and oftentimes preschool) friends, but also made me grateful for the friends I made in college. Especially the one with whom I saw the movie.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

why i'm feeling slightly anti-social

I think that I'm finally feeling the wear of interviewing. Now that I don't have to sell myself on a weekly basis (I had 20 interviews this year alone), I just don't want to be social and "nice" when I don't have to do so. Also, being on at work and constantly meeting and remeeting new people is a drain.

Don't get me wrong. I'd much rather being doing this than putting up with the same BS from the same people.

But just don't ask me to be that same Southern Belle anytime soon.

(But to those I love, I'll always make like Truvy in her hair salon... What can I do for you?)

I've officially made my thirteen year old self happy

There are times when I really feel like I'm exactly the same person I was when I was 13 years old. This is a good thing considering I'm coming face to face with age 27 in less than a week's time. But really, all I do, all day, is deal with books and people who live for books. Over hearing people's conversations about voracious vacation reading is such a nice change of pace from overhearing conversations about root canals, PR parties for H&M, meeting Moby (who cares?), rashes, a lack of boyfriends and financial aid.

Also, while this seems silly, I get to ride a train everyday. I don't have to drive a car or park -- a major stress when I was a teenager. I can get around on my own without having to carpool. A life without carpooling is a beautiful thing indeed.

Like my eighth grade days, I kinda feel like I'm wearing a uniform to work what with the formality of "looking nice." And like the uniform, I can't quite pull off skirts because I'm short and don't have long stems. But what can you do? Life always has its limits. So long as I can get away with carrying a canvas tote full of books, I've got it made.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

work = sleepy

well, work + friends = sleepy.

happy sleepy, but sleepy.

it was brought to my attention that I have 140+ friends. I thought this was an arbitrary number and then I realized I have 145 friends on friendster. I rock. Thanks for reminding me, LCD, about my infinite coolness --- and by coolness I mean dorkdom.

Thank God it's gonna be Wednesday. Two and a half more days this week. Four day weekends are rough. Everyone who went away came back with a wack hairstyle or is sick. I'm just a bit sleepy. That is a fair trade.

Monday, July 04, 2005

talk about making a point (or: this could only happen in New Orleans)

Read this.

Evidently, Allison "Tootie" Montana of the Mardi Gras Indians made a point of going to a special City Council meeting in NOLA to speak out against the police brutality against Mardi Gras Indians and after saying "I want this to stop," regarding the miscommunication between the Indians and the police, he dropped dead.

Being that it's New Orleans, the City Council President was later found crying and thinking that the death was all his fault.

But prior to that maudlin display, The Times-Picayune reported that,
"After minutes passed without an ambulance, the crowd quickly sensed the urgency of the situation. But instead of grief or panic, the chiefs and spy boys and flag boys and queens of the assembled tribes launched into a somber rendition of "Indian Red," a slow spiritual song that is a staple at Mardi Gras Indian funerals."

I love my crazy messed up hometown. God bless America and all the odd cultural encounters like this one. Happy Fourth, y'all. Eat some watermelon or iced coffee. Sing along with the radio or smile at the folks on the subway. Be happy. Maybe I'll write about Fourth of Julys past sometime today. If not, maybe later this week. Happy memories.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

what would Lincoln say?

Shamefully, I'm reading this political biography of Lincoln for work. It's exhuming long forgotten episodes and encounters in American history.

It's depressing me to think of what Lincoln might think of today's United States. Considering what a mess this country is in at the moment, I just want to cry. It's so upsetting to think of how we could have moved beyond 9/11 into a world that embraces tolerance. Nope, we have to fall back on that easy friend, fear.

I know a lot of people who like to talk about how the North should have let the South go, but that hurts considering I'm at heart a Southerner. I don't think the problem falls fundamentally with Southerners. I think everyone has to take into account the human flaws of well-intentioned people and their own fear.

On this Fourth of July weekend, I feel really proud to be an American because of our unique heritage. I love that I have lived in such different regions of the US (South, Mid-Atlantic, New England and New York -- which is its own region, in my opinion). I love finding pieces of myself in all these spaces. Yet shouldn't I feel that way about the whole world? It's so easy to start pointing fingers and saying that certain people make too many assumptions or consume without thinking. Stop pointing it out and start living a difference. I feel like a lot of Americans are slowly trying to do just that, but these aren't the people who get a spotlight.

Reading this book on Lincoln is exposing to me just how politically expedient even Lincoln was. It's nothing new. But I just wish we could have come a bit further in terms of the way we treat everyone aside from those who resemble the immediate demographics of the founding fathers.

Friday, July 01, 2005

happier things

OK. I have raved enough about the end of the world...

Here is a lovely story about lovely New Hampshire
complete with a picture all too familiar to me. And who can beat any reference to Lou's? Please. I want a country breakfast with coffee cake muffin NOW.

Only thing missing: dude, how could you forget the only hot spot in town?

The Hanover Co-Op

You thought I was going to say Five Olde, right?

what a jackass

Mr. Bush held a five-minute phone conversation with Justice O'Connor starting at 10:18 a.m., telling her, "For an old ranching girl, you turned out pretty good," a reference to her roots in El Paso, Tex.

He said this to a woman who was the first Supreme Court justice and served for 24 years. If I were her, I would have responded, "For a spoiled, cokehead, self-serving, momma's boy, jackass, you got pretty damn lucky."

Remeber that I told you

In 2000, I was a harpie. I yelled at every person I knew who wanted to vote for Nader, believed Gore and Bush were the same person, thought Gore was a bore and felt Bush wasn't that conservative.

Why was it so important for everyone to vote for Gore?

The Supreme Court.

And after Bush stole the election, he showed his true colors. Colors I knew were there all along because apples don't fall too far from the tree. I knew families like the Bushes in New Orleans. Sneaky, reactionary people. If these nothing New Orleanians could act this way, why wouldn't this political family from Houston?

And so here we are in 2005, Rehnquist is about to drop dead and Sandra Day O'Connor has just announced that she is going to retire.

Buy your birth control now, kids, because it's all over. Roe v. Wade will be overturned before the end of Bush's term and then they're going to go after birth control. And that's just the first thing that comes to mind because I am a woman. Who knows what else will happen. 2084? Try 2014.

welcome back, baby, to the poor side of town

I went to see the Eels tonight at Town Hall. All I really knew of them was that song "Novocane for the Soul" from the 90s. A one hit wonder? Well, hell no. They were amazing. The show was incredible. There was a five piece string section and a renaissance man who played organ, piano, mandolin, guitar, saw (!), a suitcase and makeshift drum (made from a trash can!). And the lead singer/svengali, Mark Oliver Everett (aka: E).

E strutted around the stage awkwardly dressed exactly like David Byrne in the 80s: gray suit and white shirt w/o tie. He had a bushy beard and chunky glasses which is also how you could describe most of the men in the room (my companion, Graham, included!).

The music soared. Everyone should have a string section following them around all the time. I sincerely believe that.

But to me the highlight was hearing him cover Johnny Rivers' "Poor Side of Town." I teared up hearing it. It was true to the original and just as moving, but lacking the backup singers. I was so tempted to chime in. And I could have after years of listening to oldies on the radio in New Orleans.

It just struck me how much I love songs like that: about loss and redemption. About trying to make it out of the ghetto. Making your way out of the bind you're in. Hoping for something better.

Songs that remind me of this:
"Say You'll Miss Me": Wilco
"Jesus etc": Wilco
"In the Ghetto": Elvis Presley
"Kentucky Rain": Elvis Presley
"Daniel": Elton John
"Tiny Dancer": Elton John
"11:11": Rufus Wainwright
"Polaroids": Shawn Colvin
"Bus Stop": The Hollies
"If Wishes Were Changes": Nanci Griffith
"Last of the True Believers": Nanci Griffith
"Wing and the Wheel": Nanci Griffith

Man, I'm really a sucker for songs that tug at my heartstrings and make me cry.