Today was a fantastic day of vegan pie baking, magazine coaster making and Quantum leap watching. The fruits of our efforts:
Not only vegan pies, but sexy vegan pies
Sadly, I took a shift this evening but I am fully stuffed with many types of pie, and that has made me a little less disappointed that I forfeited my Saturday night.
Emmie woke me up this morning because I was, literally, hugging myself. This is a sign that our opposite schedules are taking their toll, and I can't wait until tomorrow when I have someone a little snugglier than myself to cuddle.
Pies of the day:
There's also a rumour going around the women at shelter that JP and I are an item. I've said no, but they don't seem to believe me. I'm going to spread a contrary rumour that I am transgender and hot n' heavy with Jesus.
Finally fell asleep at 4:53am, and woke up with Em's alarm at 5:10am. And again at 7:12am, 8:25am, 9-something, 11:30 and noon.
I'm exhausted but my mind continues like a slow gin fizz--just a little too active to invite sleep.
It's funny sometimes where training can take you, and how it kicks in during professional or personal circumstances. Staying calm comes from the training; sticking around for events to fully unravel comes from loyalty, caring and foolhardiness.
Speaking of ravel(ry): I'm finally a member!
I've made a pact with myself to lay in bed with my eyes closed as soon as this episode of Sanctuary is over, and count down from one hundred.
After years of each other...
Em and I ran into a hug the second she walked through the door this afternoon.
In other news, the (formerly baby) chicks are the size of Radclyffe. And I hate Twitter. Try as you may: I'm not converting.
I learned that from the poster in the third stall of the bar bathroom.
I love my coworkers. We have a standing date for Wednesday nights at the Red Garter where we drink and discuss embarrassing birthday drinking stories, childbirth, relationships, Tom Waits and Family Guy.
Lately my spare time has been consumed with crafting holiday gifts for everyone and discovering a love for Guitar Hero, and that's pretty much it. Text me to hang: both of these activities are better with twp-plus (and recommended for ages 8 and up).
I worry for my friends.
I am wholeheartedly thrilled with technology and in love with life and science right now. It started several days ago when I tried on a set of Myvu glasses (http://www.myvu.com/# -->follow the 'watch how Myvu works' link) and yelped ecstasy. My reaction wasn't so much a product of the glasses themselves, but born of the realization that the future--my future, the Future that I'd been promised since Rosey first chided Elroy, and Picard ordered Earl Grey; hot, with lemon--had arrived.
Second thought: 'About damn time'. First thought: 'holy jesus fuck'.
Perhaps I'm simple to have been thrown by such a small, commercial piece of technology but I honestly had no idea just how close to the SciFi dreams of my childhood we've really come.
From the Myvu, I moved on to New Scientist, Technology Review, and have spent the last seven hours skipping joyously from one techno-thread to another, and watching tv series Eureka. Did you know that Invisibility Cloaks have been around since 2006? And that not only are commercial space vehicles in late-stage production, but within three years you could ride in Virgin Galactic's (Virgin Airline's space program--I wasn't even aware they HAD a space program) MotherShipTwo space-plane for a meagre $200,000?
3-D TV screens; no need for glasses. Neuron-controlled robots. Monitors that treat depression. Cancer-crushing nanotubes (kicking chemo like a bad habit). Not to mention the International Space Station.
It's all right here, right now, and the thought of all this literally brings me to the point of tears. Of course I have misgivings--what's to stop private corporations from monopolizing nano cancer treatments out of the range of public health channels altogether? What practical use or justification could any nation have to produce invisibility/cloaking technology if not for militaristic gain (a billion dollar campaign for the best seat in the women's locker room)? I get that, and know full well that those with the power will continue to exploit those with less. Slavery to sweatshops to patenting food sources and privatizing medical research: it's all the same.
That doesn't detract from the overall feeling of awe and just plain joy I'm experiencing though. If anything, this will produce in me a greater understanding of my responsibility to our global community. We--you, me, us--are going to draw the road map for where this future is taking us. If I'm afraid that other-world colonization is going to lead to the devastation of further planets and the repetition of this destructive cycle, then I should be doing something about it. Private companies have the groundwork for colonization already in place, and the first 'Space Commercial' was already broadcast (marketing potato chips to any hungry whatevers may be out there), so I should be doing something about it now.
It's a hell of a lot to take in and worlds--literally?--of responsibility for our generation, sure, and I am redeeeeeeeeculously excited about it.
The European Space Agency will be recruiting for a new class of astronauts in the next few years, according to their press release.
You should get on that, kids. Srsly.
I almost saved a pigeon today. The not uncommon but slightly funny aspect is that I typically (passionately) dislike them. They congregate in the run, stealing food from the chickens in a grey swarm before bathing in their water dish. I often imagine all the diseases that they're washing off into that water dish for my unsuspecting flock to consume, and I try to open and close the shutter rapidly to scare them away. This morning I went out to feed the chickens, and stood for several minutes in my robe clapping at the pigeons that tried to infest the yard. As I came around the corner to put the feed back in the house I saw a black, long-haired cat running away from the brick pile (that used to be a kiln). A feather clung to it's mouth, but this was not unusual. That cat is a regular in our yard, and sometimes preys among the tall grass by the fence. Briefly, I thought if that cat had any sense it would take out a few of those fat damn rats with wings. The automatic water timer wasn't working properly so I squatted and fiddled for a while. After a few minutes, a grey lump waddled slowly out of the pile of bricks that used to be a kiln. It was a pigeon, dragging a wing, obviously in some sort of shock. Apparently, that black cat and I'd had the same thought. But this one survived. It'd survived because of me, but only because I'd inadvertently interrupted its killer. I tried to catch it in a towel with the thought that i would release it on the other side of the fence, but it wobbled this way and that around the yard until it hid under the table. At this point I gave up, and threw a handful of feed next to the dazed bird, and a small dish of water. I came in and out of the yard for a while, putting laundry into the wash, switching it to the dryer, and each time checking on Ethel the pigeon. Em said it wasn't a good idea to name it. Em and I went out to lunch at Bumsteds and when we returned Ethel was no longer under the table, but most of the food was gone. I rounded the corner to get the clothes from the dryer and that same black cat took off running. I looked down and at the bloodied stump that had been Ethel the pigeon, went back inside for a garbage bag, and threw her into the dumpster.
Long story short, I'm a hypocrite and that pigeon is no better off for my interference. I wished death upon it and it's cohorts, and then bought it a couple of hours as Ethel--a name and presupposed personality that did it very little good in the end.
The lights went out at work for several hours tonight, and several of the participants and I huddled in the office around the one functioning flashlight in the shelter. The phones also went down and I forgot to charge my cell. When the rain calmed down a bit I decided to try out the breakers, armed with a faulty umbrella. It was a horror movie (or cheap electroshock therapy) waiting to happen.
You'll be pleased to hear that the 1000+ tadpoles living at shelter--participants dug a small pond, lined it with plastic bags, set a ring of bricks, and a few carefully arranged rocks to create a small habitat for them--weathered the storm just fine.
This morning I accidentally made vanilla scones (instead of cinnamon-vanilla cookies) for a "vanilla-sushi-fresh fruit" themed pot luck.
Then I burned a batch of miniature cinnamon rolls (intended for the same pot luck).
I burned a second batch of miniature cinnamon rolls while i was trying to scrape the black patches from the first patch.
I also burned my hand trying to rescue the second batch.
The highlight was when I stood on a 2cm long furniture tack. My bare heels didn't stand a chance.
This very second, tetanus bacteria could be coursing through my veins.
To: The Brooklyn pizza Delivery Girl
From: The unkempt, mangy lesbian at 903.
My apologies for earlier. That string of profanities was not aimed at you, but at the tack on my porch that drove into my foot mid-sentence. I do not have Tourettes, I usually shower and dress myself by noon (and I did, later, but I was watching Project Runway and hygiene took a backseat this morning: you understand), and I'm not dangerous. Please take take this into consideration before bypassing my house on future deliveries.
P.s. Did you notice that I tipped you extra because of the profanity, tears, and tack sticking from my heel?
This is one of those bad days.
I'm being eaten alive. As of last count, I have thirteen nickel-sized welts (and two dime-sized ones). Nature is sucking me dry...
I forgave my mother last night (as I walked drunkenly home). I thought about how to successfully transition between mosquitoes and forgiveness, but there you have it. When I was little I idolized my dad because he was the nicer of my parents and gave me the most leeway. As recently as three years ago I empathized the most with him, 'the former hippie trapped in a loveless marriage'. I saw his complaints about my mother as a common bond between us victims. It took years for me to realize that not only was she not to blame for our every perceived pain or setback, but that she was also a victim. Age finally reversed my perspective, and I can forgive her (for expressing herself in the only way she knew how) and him (constantly scapegoating to mask his inadequacy), and myself for my own self-centered inexperience. None of us are blameless but not one of us is to blame--that's essentially what I'm getting at.
And then, for the past two nights, I've had terrible nightmares. The kind that involve possessed mannequins and entrapment and drive you to wake up crying at 4:30am. At this point I tell Em that she has to hold me or the world'll end and they'll get me. She mumbles "okay" and sleepily drapes her arm around me. This helps.
I'm ranting really. It must be the blood loss.
Working at a shelter with a capacity of seventy (plus some wiggle room) I've acquired some of the best party stories ever. Hands down. I can trump just about anyone: you sold fifty skinny jeans to a 86 year old woman? I confiscated a bic razor blade from a woman who was trying to cut off her diseased foot with it.
The only problem is that although some stories are translatable ("diseased foot woman" has gotten a lot of traffic) the only people who can really get my stories--names, dates, context--are my co-workers, and they've seen it all before.
Try to tell an overnight shelter story to a seasoned mid-shift coworker and all you'll get is one-upped. "Diseased foot? There was one month where three of our intakes had pinworm and two had scabies. The entire shelter had to be stripped down, burned, and put on antibiotics. Hey Dave!--Dave'll remember who it was--Dave! remember pinworm month?" To which, of course, Dave will reply, "Month? More like two," and add on how they later discovered one of the women with scabies had two children with the same first name (different sexes), and was carrying on a fruitful prostitution business out of the emergency exit gate.
Or, in the case of less-exiting stories--like extracting a fake fingernail scrap from someone's cheek with tweezers or the girl who arrived from the east side by bike carrying a machete the whole way, the response is decidedly less rewarding: "Have you exited her file yet? I hope you doc'd that you checked in a machete when you did her intake. What do you think of the new intake paperwork layout, anyway?"
Last night was also the True Colours tour, and the Phoenix show was packed. Cindi Lauper was amazing, and even got down into the crowd to the delight of aging lesbians and heterosexual women alike. Nobody even minded that the B-52s played Rock Lobster, or that every one from Cindi to Carson wore the same brand and cut of black leather trousers.
This could all be a load of bull, though, because I wasn't there. I was at work, doing paperwork, when I got four texts from my mum. Joan Jett had just been on stage. Carson changed clothes between each set. Wanda Sykes just said that Obama's success as president would be attributed to whether his black or white heritage was more prominent, isn't she hilarious.
I had completely forgotten that the True Colours tour was underway, and that my mum had possibly invited me to it some months earlier. I vaguely remember a conversation about dates and since I had no set work schedule at that time and hadn't even started working at shelter, I declined. In retrospect I doubt I declined so much as said that I'd get back to her and then time ran out.
I told Em and she was beside herself. She was beside me too, and so I had to move really fast. "I just can't believe that you wouldn't tell her to give it to me. You KNOW Cindi Lauper was my style icon! And you went behind my back and truend down tickets!" What made matters worse is that I got a shirt. I got a shirt, and my little sister shook hands with Cindi Lauper before the pop icon took her chair to stand on during an in-crowd rendition of "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun." And my mother, in the seventh row, made friends with the middle-aged lesbian couple in front of her. Em just couldn't believe the injustice of my mother, who was 'less than thrilled' at my coming out, and my 12 year old sister went to the gay style revue of the year: "but we're real lesbians!" I expect to get back into her good graces some time in 2032, just in time for the next True Colours tour.
Dear, gentle friends; I would apologize for my prolonged absence, but we know that such a sentiment would be largely empty. The bare fact is that I haven't posted because I have been otherwise occupied. Not always with 'important' activities, if there must be a hierarchy, but more preferable at the time than writing in this space. Such are my priorities, and you know it's nothing personal.
For those of you who are familiar with my habits as a morning bird, this 5am post is nothing out of the ordinary. The unusual aspect is that I have not been to bed. Nor do I usually go to bed at night on days that I work. Instead, I am creating packets on Assertiveness, doling out meds, and convincing schizophrenic women that if they'll just move the dresser away from the door "they" won't attack them or "the light." I am a Shelter Support Specialist (a terrible name for a Case Manager or Advocate) at Emerge! Centers against Domestic Abuse (another godawful name: the brainchild of a highly expensive group of consultants and befuddled sample of the population, it sounds like the kind of diet plan where the meals are bought separately). As far as I can tell, the position is rather like that of a university RA in their second year of pharmacology school. It's taxing, often disgusting, and entails a 40 hour work week minimum.
It's no stretch to say that I love my job. The government has even been so good as to grant me a fingerprint clearance card. I am officially accepted into the social work flock, and have a guaranteed space on the "easily traced" government black list of the next mass social uprising. I accept that there are trade-offs.
The changing of the seasons has brought with it new opportunities for Em and myself, and we have wholeheartedly embraced them. She works with books: it's all she ever wants. To share her love of books and their contents with the world, little segments at a time. It's a bookstore, not a library. It's the environment that counts, and she's damn good at her job. Sadly, summer also brought the death of a new friend, our own little Vita. A chicken and a loyal friend at that.
Friends, I couldn't say at this juncture how well and with what voracity I will maintain this correspondence, but I will have you all know that there is a small patch at the corner of Alder and 2nd where fresh blue eggs are gathered daily, spontaneous dance parties are frequent, and there is always a cozy futon available to you. Unbearably hot the days may be, but the nights deserve their mention. Besides, what's a few dozen degrees between friends?