Poutine or not poutine?
That is the question.
Whether ‘tis Canada-er in the dish
To suffer the pangs and harrows
of unpototatoed beer
Or to take curds against a sea of gravy
And then potatoes, eat them. To eat, to weep—
No more; and by a weep to say we cry
The tears and thousand natural joys
That fat is heir to. ‘Tis a consommé-tion
Devoutly to be wished. To cry, to weep—
To weep, perchance to seam—aye, there’s the pub,
For in that weep of joy, what seams may burst
When we have shoveled down this aortal clog,
Must give us pause. There’s the diet
That makes insanity of so large meal:
For who would bear the chips and dips of blah,
The suppressor’s tong, the dietitians veggie sticks
The pangs of uneaten food, the line’s delay,
The impotence of whiskey, and the turns
That drunken merit of the caloric takes,
When she herself might her poutine make
With a raw potato? Who would these smoothies bear
To nom and snarf under a brew’ry light
But that the dread of something after food,
The undigested grease, from whose toilet
No diner returns, puzzles the gut,
And makes us rather bear the salad we have
Than to stuff our faces with crap we know not of.
Thus conscience does make dieters of us all
And thus the native hue of gravy-ation
Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of curd,
And enterprises of great fry and flavor
With this regard their nomness turns a fry,
And lose the name of dinner.
Poutine or not poutine?
So! Here I am again, plotting another long blog about how I don’t blog often enough. Blargh.
But maybe the timing’s right enough, since one of my scant entries these last few months regarded the approaching summer, and today we find ourselves in anticipation of the first real day of fall: Sunday’s high is so far projected at 77, and that? Is glorious.
Yea, though it’s been a long, hot—and excruciatingly so—summer, whose torrents came only recently (but with all the fervor of making up for lost rain), it has, to say the least, passed.
I’m now well settled in at my new place, a former WWII barracks building with high windows and crooked, creaking floors, surrounded by lush greenery and now christened the Banana Pad. I sleep on a loft, reminiscent of college nights with the ceiling within reach. But CJ likes high spaces, and I like the saved space, short commute and central location with still reassuring isolation.
These are not all the makings of a new chapter, by far, but a perhaps decent-size turn in a two-year-old life transition, now marked by a bold new tattoo that’s yet to inspire even a trace of regret. Which, let’s face it, is surprising for neurotic me.
For the moment, it’s Friday, and I’m basking in the last remnants of satisfaction from completed assignments (including a craft beer story of which I’m very proud) while not quite obligated to stress about upcoming deadlines. I’ve got just enough of a cold to crush my ambition without doing similar things to my spirit, plus some mood-enhancing cold medicine and a blank slate of a lovely-weathered weekend ahead of me.
Just as summer turns things inward, hopefully fall will turn me outward again, and I’ll find more entertaining material for here. In the meantime, I’m just trying to strike while the Hammer’s hot.
Been a while since a blog. Lots of mindless refusal to ponder the universe, punctuated by some moderate-to-decent-to-maybe-a-bit-too-decent(-if-you-know-what-I-mean) times, plus the occasional crying jags over money, my waistline and the still-lingering Worst Feeling of All.
But this week so far? I dunno. I mean, Sunday night involved that latter option for activities. (When coworkers McD and TinyRed gracefully responded to my complaining by calling me a trooper, I dissented with, “Not in the least: I cry, I scream, I whine, I rend my garments…and at the end of it…well, I’m just still here.”)
Then Monday started with a flat tire three miles from home (soon-to-be NotHome)—and a spare tire buried under Clothes ‘N Crap for the upcoming move. Plus, no cheater for the lug nuts, so I had to wander over to a nearby construction zone to borrow a rebar bender. Thus was my outfit ruined with grease, pavement, brake dust, and about four gallons of sweat. (Careful, random condominium driveway users—it’s slippery over there.)
Except that, for all that inconvenience (and the eventual expense of new tires), I kinda felt like a badass, so…we’ll call that breaking even.
But then the rest of Monday kind of continued as a general Foray into Fuckery: late work assignments returned for poor quality; random medical emergencies; blah-de-blah blah.
And then came today: Tuesday. And with Monday sucking up all the suckitude, Tuesday was bound to have promise. And I gotta say, it kinda delivered.
After a 10:30 Monday bedtime, I woke unaided at 7 a.m. and so…jogged? Where did THAT come from?
Took my car to the shop for two new tires, an oil change and AC charge.
Walked to the office (bonus cardio!)
Wrote a 1,200-word feature (among the late assignments I failed to complete on Monday) in four hours.
Worked through lunch.
Wrote copy for a heartwarming photo-based charticle about a local charity that organizes baseball leagues for disabled kids.
Called FPL, the propane people and the county utilities office to get light/gas/water squared away for my new apartment.
Started three more departments that will actually be done tomorrow. (Late, as it happens, but not TOO late.)
Received word from the Head Word-Lady In Charge that my 1,200-word feature was not, in fact, the irredeemable pile of poo I’d suspected. No rewrites!
Retrieved car and drove home.
With cool AC!
While listening to The Immaculate Collection!
And have thus far this evening mopped, loaded some of the very last bits and tiddles into the car, watched baseball, and ventured forth with transferring my Comcast account.
I mean, I’m just saying: This week has so far had a good deal of everything. Am I headed for a rest? Or something new entirely?
To every thing, there is a season, and a time to every purpose under OH MY GOD TURN ON THE AC.
Yep: summer. It’s not exactly a sudden transition, but a series of changes that become more and more drastic, more and more frequently: The relief of coming inside to the AC, even before you realized you were uncomfortable; the sudden afternoon storm; the reappearance of massive car-movers parked in the center lane along the key, taking people’s Jags and Beamers back to their homes up North.
What feel like the BLAM: SUMMER’S DEFINITELY HERE moments—the smack-you-in-the-face morning-time heat; the “I’ll just have lunch delivered, thank you” afternoons huddled indoors and painful, grump-inducing, oven-stuffed commutes home that end with you in a crumpled, naked heap on the couch the moment you can get in the door and strip (…what? Just me?)—have thus far been offset by still-pleasant moments, including this past week’s surprise 70-degree weather and less-than-washcloth humidity.
But we all know those temperate moments are numbered.
Still, there are things to be said for summer—though “relentless, oppressive sunshine” remains one of my favorite self-coined phrases, and a lot of summer’s benefits involve…well…avoiding summer.
This is the time of year for maximum Gulf-diving anticipation, when there’s zero cold-water hesitancy, because you know the waves will only be about 15 degrees cooler than the air—ie perfect.
And this is the time of year when, even if your car’s AC keeps acting up (thus the grump-inducing commutes), you still have four hours of post-work daylight to take advantage of the Gulf’s bathtub waters.
And this is the time of year when barbecues and baseball games invite you to suffer–but happily so–through the weather, stuffing your face and sweating and laughing, only to discover beautiful clouds, a cool breeze and a wonderful evening on the other side.
And this is the time of year when things turn inward. Indoors, of course, but also the metaphorical equivalent—switching from an obligation for appreciating the whole, big, beautiful world to an awareness of beautiful, closed-in quietude.
I like a nice dark bar with just enough windows to show how blindingly bright it is outside. I like the feeling of sanctuary. Relieved survival. And I like emerging with a buzz into the still-warm humid night: There’s a smell that occurs only when the day has been tempered in the heat and wetness and then plunged into darkness, and it’s most noticeable when you spend a few hours talking about other things, dulling your neuroses and breathing sweet, chemically cooled air through your nostrils.
If you do it right, summer brings things back to scale.
“In our day-to-day circumstances, our self-regard is hungry for three things: an opportunity to be generous to the disadvantaged; an opportunity to be reverent to the noble; an opportunity to be superior to the ignorant. And we are more than eager to imagine these creatures before us, should we not encounter them naturally.”
Top 10 reasons and excuses for not having posted in a while.
- Beau is living a much more exciting blog right now, with prettier pictures and better writing.
- I can’t stop listening to the new Eminem album.
- I’ve gotten sucked into The Goldfinch, but I’m not far enough into it to give a full assessment. (It’s good, though; definitely literary.)
- Mario Kart!
- Bolts’ playoff push.
- I just rediscovered Chain Rxn on Facebook.
- Surprise Sunday-Night Tequila Delivery Service.
- Getting pictures from my phone to WordPress is hard.
- Let’s face it: My fat ass needs more exercise.
- Work conversations like this:
Me: Also because [special issue] is less fun than a hysterectomy. We should put that on the cover. “219 local [redacted]! Less fun than a hysterectomy!”
McD: Yeah, there’s a catchy coverline! People would pick THAT issue up just to see what the hell was inside.
Not a uterus, that’s for sure.