Thursday, April 22, 2010

"I'm beyond your peripheral vision so you might have to turn your head..."

I got to see Ani Difranco perform last night and it was amazing.  I knew it would be.

I'm so glad I decided to just go, even though I have so much work shit to do right now it makes my head spin. At first, I had the same reaction to her that I had 10+ years ago:  That it is so moving to have such a big, opinionated, BRAVE sound eminating from such a petite person.    She is full of energy, honesty, charisma and I needed to see that.   Of course, I love her recorded stuff (esp. the albums from the late 90's) but as with most artists, seeing her live is a horse of a different color.

And as I sat in the dark auditorium watching her, however, I realized that in the time since I last saw her perform we've both gone through major changes as women- married, become mothers, seen a new dawn for democracy in this country.  It was evident that these events influenced her in her more recent songs, and evident that they influenced me in how I reacted to her music and lyrics.  It was a moment of kinship with someone I have never met, but whose music has kept me company for 15+ years. 


Monday, April 19, 2010

Aw, Nerds!

Oh my holy balls.  Work shit is totally rocking my sanity right now and its pretty much all I can do not to yell continuously 'FOR THE LOVE OF GRAVY YOU ARE THE STUPIDEST PERSON ALIVE.'  to MULTIPLE individuals.

Saving graces (only barely though) include:  My "know when to fold'em, know when to hold'em" husband (hello! dozen roses out of the blue last Friday.  He could totally tell I was about to encapsulate myself in a bell jar.) , my kid when he's not yelling "NO!!!!" at me or arguing with every thing I ask him to do (so...maybe an hour a day of actual enjoyable little kidness?) , exercise, playing music and sleep.  (Sweet, sweet sleep.  I want to go to there.)

Please note that beer is not on that list.  I'm TRYING, y'all.

Yeah.  So if my little tiny corner of the interwebs is a tad quiet this week, you'll know why. I'm just out there in the work a day world, kicking ass, taking names, and occasionally channeling Liz Lemon.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

To-Do List

I always have a large, running to-do list but here are the items in the forefront of my brain right now:

*Clean out my closets and organize my clothes.  Seriously.  My closets are in a HORRID state.  Piles of sweaters and t-shirts that haven't been worn in years.  YEARS.  Shit that doesn't fit.  Underwear with holes in it.  (Sorry...TMI?)  Anyway, it usually seems to be in disarray at the end of winter but its probably the worst its ever been.

* Run a 5K this summer. I'm doing really well but need to keep it up and stay motivated, especially when my job goes to a 7:30am-4:30pm schedule for the summer (as opposed to 8-5 like it is right now.)  5:30am is MIGHTY EARLY to be pounding the pavement.  I also want to make it to a running store to have my stride or step or whatever you call it evaluated because I don't think the shoes I have are quite right for me.  (I'm having minor knee pain.)

* Plant herbs for my kitchen windowsill:  Last year I had Basil, Mint and Chamomile, I think.  I think I'll keep the Basil but maybe try parsley as well...hrm...I'm taking suggestions but please don't say 'cilantro' because it is GROSS.  (And I am not alone in feeling this way!)

*Take Otto swimming more often.   We were on a good streak of going every couple weeks or so there for a while but have fallen out of it.  I recently bought a book with basic lessons for little ones and I'm excited to get back in and start helping him feel confident in the water.   Plus the weather's getting warmer and I sort of feel like shaving my legs again.  Heh.

*Finish the book we're reading for bookclub in two-weeks, before our next meeting.  So far, it's a really interesting book but I'm having a hard time finding large chunks of reading time lately.  I am also the one responsible for putting together a short list (4-5 books) for everyone to choose from next month.  Suggestions?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Looking Up

Not that things have been shitty or anything, but the last few days have just been...well...good.  Some reasons:

First, the Husband and I are both working out regularly and eating well.   It's nice to be on this journey together and exercising seems to help us both get rid of stress and crap feelings.  I've always known this about myself and have worked out pretty regularly throughout my adult life, but the husband is just now getting into it and the difference in his mood marked.  We are both sleeping well (except for when the little dude wakes us up, which is minimal.)

Speaking of, Otto is happy and growing and sweet (you know, apart from occasional two-year-old stubbornness, which is to be expected).   He's really into singing right now.  His favorites are Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and the theme song from the 1960's Spiderman cartoon.  He serenades me regularly and emphatically.  He still nurses once or twice a day which we are both okay with right now.  I'm really looking forward to summertime and weekend days in the park and swimming and hiking and camping and all that stuff.

As for the other 'baby,' Ruby is maturing and losing some of the obnoxious puppy behavior.  Her coat is a total mess, however, matted beyond repair even though I've been good about brushing her.  I've done some research lately and from what the internets say, its her puppy coat coming out and creating fluffy matted messes.   Or something.  From what I can tell, it will get better.  Anyway, we have an appointment for the groomers early next month to shear her like a sheep.  Heh.

Overall, things are looking up from the depths of winter.  The weather is (slowly) coming around to spring.  I saw a robin the other day and the snow is almost totally gone- just a few dirty patches in shady places remain.


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Uke it Up!

Something you may not know about me is that I have recently become a HUGE fan of ukulele music.  Traditional, non-traditional, uke-punk, you name it, I pretty much love it.   (I think Amanda Palmer , for one, can be credited with really feeding this obsession.  And IZ, for another.)

Anyway, amateur musician that I am (or used to be, anyhow) I've been jonesing for a uke of my own for a while. Of course, I've never felt entitled to spend the money on something so unnecessary for myself (even though a decent beginner uke is only about $50).   I've made do, instead, with listening to lots of music, scouring you-tube and giving my poor piano some love while wishing she was someone else.  Shameful!

But my husband, bless him, took matters into his own hands and surprised me yesterday with a ukulele of my own, out of the blue!  Its not my birthday, our anniversary...anything!  (Its pretty much the same model I linked to above.)

I love it so much!  My playing is so rudimentary that its comical but you have to start somewhere, right?  So far its much easier for my relatively small hands to get around on than my acoustic guitar is.  And I love the pure, light sound a uke makes.

It has been really hard to put it down and do things like eat, brush my teeth, or sleep.  I just want to play it all the time.  Also, its the perfect Otto size so he can have some fun with it too.

Here, for your listening/viewing enjoyment, one of the best you-tube ukulele acts I've found so far:  GUGUG performing some Ramones.  Loooooooooove.

ETA:  IF and when I can play an actual song to the point of minimal embarrassment, I just might put it out here for you guys.  Maybe.  :)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Take it to the Limit...

First of all, I'm ECSTATIC that I decided not to register for the first 5K race of the season tomorrow.  It's cold, snowy, windy and gross outside (and supposed to stay that way) and I'm positive that I would have awakened tomorrow morning and muttered a terse "fuck you" before defiantly turning my face back into the warm bed.  And then I would have been out the $20 for registration and t-shirt.  So THANK GOODNESS  laziness won out and I can now spend my $20 on doughnuts or something.

 In all seriousness, the running is going really well so far.  I've been going 3 mornings a week since the roads (mostly) cleared up and Ruby goes with me which is fun.  (2 mornings a week, I still do some sort of strength training).  I've never run with a dog before and its nice to have company.   Plus since its still dark when we're out there and as I seem to have a moral objection to buying any clothing in hues other than black or gray, she kind of acts as a huge,fluffy, white moving reflector.

We're averaging 3.5 miles nowadays and I think I'll stick with that distance for a while and just try to improve my time.  Right now, it's taking me about 40 min so... (you do the math)  I'm really slow.  Running like 12 minute miles.  Heh.  But I'm out there!  I might increase to 4 miles just to have a nice, round number but I'd really like to work on getting at least a little bit faster.

During the winter, I forget about the meditative, enriching aspect of running outside.  Its just not the same when you're on a treadmill watching CNN or a rerun of some HBO series.  Running outside, pounding the pavement, matching your footsteps to your breath, is so much...freer.  And more real, somehow.  I feel like I'm out there, on my own and its up to me to get back home.  I can't just quit whenever I want, jump off the treadmill and into a hot shower.  If I've carried myself 2 miles out, I've gotta go 2 miles back. 

All that aside, I'm still glad I stopped myself from the 5K this weekend.  There will be plenty more over the spring and summer and as much as I'm enjoying getting back into running, and even though I've been doing it in the dark, early morning, doing it in the ice cold snow on a Saturday just sounds like punishment.

Gawd, I'm a wimp :-)