You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘relationships’ tag.

The Devil

The Devil

“Why do you call your husband that?” It’s usually the folks that don’t know him doing the asking.

People in the know make him identity bracelets with “The Devil” spelled out in beads.

He’s also been lovingly refered to as “Squidward” by a self-identified “Patrick” who dubbed me “Spongebob.” If, like me, you need a reference point for these accusations, I give you two:

The Devil can be grumpy for sure. Naturally, he’s a bit of a Grinch about Christmas.  This year in a rare moment when he wasn’t complaining about how ridiculous the holiday is, and how stupid all the shoppers are clogging up the traffic home, he asked for “kill shirts.”  Kill shirts, as in the shirts TV serial killer, Dexter, wears. It was a sincere request.  Not that he’s going to kill anything; the Devil is a vegetarian.

He’s the kind of guy who listens to Heavy Metal, Death Metal, and who watches the Vegan Black Metal Chef.

His lounge-wear reveals his devilishness clearly:

EL-D

He often conceals his dark nature behind various disguises.  When we make public appearances (because, you know, we’re rockstars), it’s customary to see each other on the way out the door and wonder aloud who exactly the other is supposed to be in regard to the costuming, then to promptly answer our own posed question.  It goes like this:

I’ll say, “Who are you going as tonight, a literature professor?”

He’ll say, “What are you supposed to be, a woodland fairy?”

We tend to create the most unlikely pairings: country gentleman and baglady, serial killer and Sporty Spice.

We are always so different, even when we’re exactly the same.  When I morph into Lilith he suddenly becomes Michael the Archangel.

In our relationship’s default settings, I lean towards a chirpy sort of joy while he does all the moody brooding.  We remind me a lot of these two:

But somehow underlying it all is just this…

Tulsa October 026

Morning light.  Tired eyes open, squinty. Through the fringe of eyelashes the air is alive with fairy dust.  Eyes wide now. Mamma and daddy need to see this! There are whys that need to be answered. Why did the fairies come and decorate the air? And why did they leave?

She doesn’t yet know the word “mote,” but she is an expert on glitter. She decorates paper plates with glitter and glue.  And she can make a necklace with macaroni and string. The macaroni necklace needs glitter and glue! She’ll have to tell mamma.

The air is so pretty.  It’s just like the water drops in the bathtub that turn to diamonds when you look at them right.  No one else seems to see them.  It’s always, “Hurry up.  Get out of the tub. I’m tired” or “Come on, we need to dry your hair before you get sick.”

She discovers momma and daddy still asleep, oblivous to fairies and air that glitters.

Daddy is better at why. She pads over to his side of the bed where he is asleep on his back. She stands there patiently waiting for him to wake up. An eternity of 10 seconds passes.  She stares at him trying to force him awake with her will.  Nothing. She stands there wondering what is the best way to wake him up without making him grumpy. She has an idea! She  will open his eyes for him so he can wake up seeing the sparkly air.  She positions her fingers above his eye lid and then pops it open.

He jumps awake like he’s been shot.

She runs away as he  yells, “Valentina! What the hell are you doing?!”

She adds another why to the ever growing collection: Why does nobody ever seem impressed that the whole world sparkles?

When I was but a wee lass, my mother would deposit me at my grandparents’ house at the onset of summer vacation to “spend the night” and there I would stay all summer. I’m pretty sure I didn’t have a change of clothes or even a toothbrush, but my grandparents, resourceful people that they were, managed to provided whatever was needed. Year after year this was the routine.

My grandparents’ storage shed, where they kept the dryer and a deep freezer full of hamburger patties and freezer-dried buns, had the most intriguing scent.  I’m convinced it was the lingering fragrance of the 1950s, though probably it was just a bouquet of old insulation, dryer sheets, and mildewed wood.  Whatever it was I have never smelled anything else like it anywhere. Somehow the scent persisted through the 70s, 80s, and 90s.

Inevitably, other family children wound up at the grandparents’ house to stay the night (for real just the night) while I was there. My grandmother would occasionally ask one of them to go to the shed to get the laundry out of the dryer.  I was rarely asked to perform this chore, probably because I was the youngest and least reliable. Plus, going to the shed by myself scared the heck out of me. In fact, I might have left an accidental trail of her panties from shed to house once when on this mission by myself…out of fear, mind you, not out of spite.  It’s hard to run away from imagined monsters while burdened with a load of heavy laundry.

Despite this fear, I didn’t mind accompanying the appointed laundry retrievers to the shed because I loved smelling the room and because all the other family kids were bigger than me, better at fighting off offending monsters, and thus terribly interesting.  I didn’t want to leave any of them alone for even a minute for fear of missing something fantastic that they might do.

So there we would stand with “not enough room in this shed for both of us” (whatever) while he or she dealt with hot laundry and I huffed the scent of the 1950s.

I really miss that scent.

Any scents from childhood that you miss?

Dedicated to El-D…

(I love you, you know.)

Tulsa October 026

The Lotus

On the day when the lotus bloomed, alas, my mind was straying,
and I knew it not. My basket was empty and the flower remained unheeded.

Only now and again a sadness fell upon me, and I started up from my
dream and felt a sweet trace of a strange fragrance in the south wind.

That vague sweetness made my heart ache with longing and it seemed to
me that it was the eager breath of the summer seeking for its completion.

I knew not then that it was so near, that it was mine, and that this
perfect sweetness had blossomed in the depth of my own heart.

—Rabindranath Tagore

May 13 2013 017

How I would love to tell you that life has been all roses and frolicking this week.

That is but a fraction of the story.May 13 2013 019

In the last couple days alone the farm has seen accidents, injuries, delusion, anger, bloodshed, exile, and multiple deaths of various creatures.  If it sounds like Lord of the Flies, it has been to some extent. In fact I believe one creature’s tailless corpse may still be wedged between two bricks in the sunroom now that I think about it. Yip, Moon Pie, and Nickel are savages in their play.

Still, we haven chosen to celebrate in spite of these things.

The voices of three generations rose up to sing gospel hymns and children’s songs.

We honored mothers.May 13 2013 021

We created new things from old things.

We fixed broken things.

We marveled.

We broke things that really needed fixing.

We recoiled in horror.

We stared too long at train-wrecks.

We cried.May 13 2013 023

We simultaneously understood and didn’t understand.

We accepted that this is all part of the giant whirlygig.

…and then we went back to the roses and frolicking.


The Geography of Bliss: One Grump’s Search for the Happiest Places in the World

Synopsis:  A cynical writer searches for the world’s happiest place

You might like this if you liked:  Eat, Pray, Love (Elizabeth Gilbert)

Recommended to: Grumpy people

What I loved about it:  This was my first Weiner book, so I wasn’t sure whether I would like it or not.  Truth be told, he seems like a bit of an ass, but he had me at the first mention of a PET scan. I’m one of those people who enjoy reading books peppered with sound-bites of science, culture, history, and philosophy.  Like right here on page 41, in a chapter on Switzerland, he manages to work Einstein AND Bertrand Russell into a passage. Later on page 183, he combines Iceland, Aristotle, and Nietzsche. Gosh—it just makes me feel all heady and smart in the same way that sprinkling wheat germ in pancake batter makes me feel healthy, even if I do wind up drenching it all with butter and syrup.

So yes, I will be reading him again.  Plus, I now have added two new places to my bucket list: Bhutan and Moldova.

What was unexpected:  Weiner was a little mean to the Moldovans. 

Best Quotes: There were so many fabulous descriptions of places and people, so I will give you a few:

In Bangkok, the sacred and the profane exist side by side, like a divorced couple who, for financial reasons, decide to continue living together.

Watching Brits shed their inhibitions is like watching elephants mate. You know it happens, it must, but it’s noisy, awkward as hell, and you can’t help but wonder: Is this something I really need to see?

India does not disappoint. It captivates, infuriates, and occasionally, contaminates.  It never disappoints.

Qataris have no culture.  Frankly, I can’t blame them.  If you spent a few thousand years scraping by in the desert, fending off the solid heat, not to mention various invading tribes, you wouldn’t have time for culture either.

 

Three Weeks with My Brother

Synopsis: Nicholas takes a trip around the world with his brother and the two reminisce about their family.

You might like this if you liked: Message in a Bottle, The Rescue, The Notebook, A Walk to Remember (Nicholas Sparks)

Recommended to: Fans of Nicholas Sparks, people trying to make sense of loss

What I loved about it:  In his fictional work, Nicholas Sparks writes sweet stories of love, family, and loss.  His memoir moved along the same themes and provided insight into why he tells the stories he tells.  The speech-language pathologist in me was also particularly interested in the intense work Sparks described doing with his son, Ryan, to help him learn to communicate.

What was unexpected: This book is not so much about the places traveled in real time as it is the places traveled in the past.  That said, Sparks does deliver enough descriptions of places they visited that I added a few destinations to my bucket list (e.g., Machu Picchu, Peru and Phnom Pehn, Cambodia).

Best Quote:

Standing next to Micah, I realized that there were times when we talked not because we needed to communicate anything important, but simply because we each drew comfort from the other’s voice.

There are two brown sycamore leaves suspended by spidersilk right outside the window. The silk is grey and cottony with age; the spider is long gone. Now the leaves hang undisturbed, but at times they tilt, flutter, or twist, depending on the breeze. It’s —

the phone vibrates, the strand of thought disippates. Words fly away like autumn leaves.

“Hello?”

Vibrations of an unfamiliar, yet cheerful voice travel through space to ear with greetings followed by a hesitant inquiry: “…do you have a moment to chat?”

Of course.

It’s a perfect moment.  A sacred and holy moment.

Pleasantries exchanged, a need expressed. Plans are tentatively made for the future and the connection is broken.

The leaves outside the window dangle in the breeze held by a thread of spidersilk.

MooMoo's forehead heart

MooMoo’s forehead heart

I’m learning to be a “good” listener. These are the wonderful words I heard around the house this week…

~*~

“Hello family!”

~*~

“I can help.”

~*~

“I feel better.”

~*~

“I’m so glad we did this.”

~*~

“I thought you needed a ‘poinsetter’…and here are those cookies I told you about.”

~*~

“I love you.”

~*~

“This has been the best day of my life.”

~*~

What words have warmed your heart this week?

A friend is someone who knows where all your bodies are buried.  Because they’re the ones who helped you put them there.

–Jenny Lawson’s dad

~~~}{~~~

This morning, a dark, dreary Monday, was a perfect day for death.

The Devil handed me a shovel and through the mud and muck I followed him to bury the body.  My rainboots were too cheerful for the occasion, but I wore them anyway, grey pajama pants tucked into the rims. Fuck Prada, The Devil wore work boots because he’s practical like that. The ground was squishy and sucked at the rubber soles. The wind flung leftover raindrops from tree leaves as he dug a shallow grave.

Hellcat (aka Baki, Lili, and Zombie Cat) was intimidating for such a soft, fluffy creature.  She packed a surprising amount of viciousness in her little frame. She would attack anyone and everyone who was within claw distance without the slightest provocation. In her heyday, she groomed incessantly.  When she wasn’t grooming she pranced around and preened to show off her fluffy coat.  Her favorite pastime was to jump into the laps of unsuspecting guests as if she wanted affection and then lash out the moment a hand was raised to pet her. Maybe she was just misunderstood.  One thing is for sure, she loved The Devil.

Hellcat’s final resting place is under the trees near the broken fence, just beyond the pond. RIP Baby Kitty.

~~~}{~~~

Perhaps the best cure for the fear of death is to reflect that life has a beginning as well as an end.  There was a time when you were not: that gives us no concern. Why then should it trouble us that a time will come when we shall cease to be? To die is only to be as we were before we were born.

–William Hazlitt

Yesterday I met the Braveheart of wasps while deadheading the Black-eyed Susans.  I must have cut down the house he built on a flower stem because he went all sorts of berserk on me.  I have learned to wear the equivalent of a spacesuit to work in the garden because I’ve come to the conclusion that everything out there is trying to kill me. The rose bushes, the poison ivy, the spiders, the mosquitoes, the ants, the wasps and the hornets – they all want in on the action. Even the grasshoppers, who once had the good sense to jump away and hide when they saw me coming, have become so fat and entitled that they don’t even bother anymore.  They stand their ground, ok well their leaf, and stare me down like they’re daring me to do something about it.

But back to Braveheart.  His flower stem was dead and it was time to go. Really, if I didn’t take it down, it would have eventually fallen on its own, so the intensity of his anger was a bit out of proportion to the facts of the situation in my opinion. I could practically hear him screaming, “I KILL YOU!”  every time he tried to attack me, which was repeatedly, over the course of half an hour, from one end of the backyard to the other. If anyone (like the neighbors or someone from Google Earth) was watching (s)he probably thinks I’m insane because with each attack I would panic, shriek, flail, jump up, and run, all the while slapping at myself and screaming “Get away from me!”

Did I mention I was running with scissors? And just like in horror movies there was the inevitable scene in which the heroine (that’s me) stumbles and falls at a critical moment. I barely managed to escape being impaled. I scrambled up and ran some more and just when I thought I’d lost him, there was a menacing buzzing about my head and he began flinging himself at me all over again. Obviously he needed a moment to cool off, so I went inside for water and shelter.  Ten minutes later, I went back outside and there Braveheart was again hurling himself at my back and head repeatedly, turning me into a raving lunatic.  How one little wasp with a sand speck brain containing less than half a million neurons can have such a long attention span is completely beyond me.

I guess I’d be pretty upset too if someone came and cut my house down off my flower. Fortunately, neither party was injured in the making of this story.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Archives

Celestial Goodness

This is a space of love and positive vibrations. It is a safe space for uplifting one’s soul.

John Wreford Photographer

Words and Pictures from the Middle East & Balkans

Artistcoveries

Discovering the joy of art

OCA learning log

Carlota Betlinski

P e d r o L

storytelling the world through travels & books

Before I Forget

STORIES WITH NO BOOKS

BEN TROVATO – Durban Poison

Columns. Letters. Rants. Stuff.

Stitched in Stone

Based on True Wives Tales

THE GODDESS ATTAINABLE

The Goddess Attainable Blog is an inspirational portal for a goddess way of life.

The Druid Herbalist

An ongoing journey with the healing power of plants

The Fledgling Belly

The Adventures of a Discerning Bellydancer

It's Just Life

Finding the Extraordinary in the Ordinary

Down the Forest Path

A Journey Through Nature, its Magic and Mystery

Project: Motion Blog

Modern. MOVEment. Memphis.

The Human Rights Warrior

"There is some good in this world...and it's worth fighting for." ~ J.R.R. Tolkien

The Tragic Life of Frank

Around five minutes ago I had this sudden revelation; that my life is quite sufficiently, tragic.

zona pellucida

...blinded by the light

Donna Mejia

Dance Artist/Scholar/Cultural-Creative

Beautiful Day Traveler

It's a beautiful day to dance with words on this journey called life.

shimmymobmemphis

dancing to change the world

samrarose

Just another WordPress.com site

Peaceful Hands Reiki

Where love flows

Job & Career News

From the Memphis Public Libraries

LibrarianShipwreck

"More than machinery, we need humanity."

Sorry Television

Reading a book a week

Mark Coakley

Author of "Hidden Harvest" and "Tip and Trade"

Garden Variety

A Gardening, Outdoor Lifestyle and Organic Food & Drink Blog

CultFit

Form, Flow and Grace

Owls and Orchids

Life, Love, Spiritual Living and the odd Catastrophe.....

Vinay Garg

Never give up