Monday, February 25, 2008

All dressed in black

The Paper Source catalogue I received in the mail on Saturday is entirely devoted to wedding invitations--having them printed, making them yourself with little kits, coordinating them with your guest book and gift boxes.

Just now I got an email from my old friend J. Crew with the subject heading "Engaged?"

People. Seriously. I have a mother. This sort of thing is her job. I really don't need miscellaneous vendors to be similarly perched on the edges of their proverbial seats. Should I ever be engaged, I'll be sure to let you know. J. Crew? I know how to reach you. Meanwhile, please calm down.

Friday, February 08, 2008


I am escorting a visitor through the school. I don't know him, so we're not saying much. This makes the loud squeaking of my shoes embarrassingly noticeable.

Me: This gives you a chance to listen to my squeaky shoes, which is good.

Him: I have some squeaky shoes too.

Me: I always forget that they do this until it's too late. I should just replace them.

Him: Mine are really nice shoes actually, it's just that they squeak. (Pause) They're not really worthy of the name "sneakers."

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

And next up..."Grandpappy's Mitzvah"

On Monday, there was a special activity day at school and I spent an hour of the morning with a group of students who were playing Bluegrass. I sang along as gamely as possible despite 1) not being a very able singer, 2) not being able to read music, and 3) never having heard of 80% of the songs. Still, the melodies are fairly simple and the song titles, even when unfamiliar, are generally pretty genre-appropriate. They have to do with family, God, journeys, love. So, when Courntey called out the name of the next song, I was taken aback. I leaned over to Zach. "What did she say? There's a song called 'The Mensch on the Hill'?"

Turns out there isn't. It's "The Mansion on the Hill." The good news is that means "Mensch on the Hill" is still available. In fact, I believe the whole genre of Yiddish Bluegrass is wide open. Knock yourself out.

Postcard from a Foreign Country

Two things are simultaneously true today that are normally mutally exclusive: it is 6am and I am up. This is unaccountable. Typically I would be up at six o'clock in the morning only if I had jetlag or needed to get to the airport. Today neither is true and yet, after lying awake since 5:23, I decided to give up the charade and actually get out of bed. Now here I am, with one tiny lamp on, listening to The Cure's "Pictures of You" on auto-repeat, waiting for the kettle to boil. Upstairs, I hear my neighbor's shower; across the street, I see a lamp on in the upstairs apartment--signs of life. These other people are citizens of the early morning. Me? I'm just visiting. Tomorrow there will be no pot of tea, no pre-dawn sky. Tomorrow there will be 48 minutes of the snooze alarm followed, quite possibly, by profanity, like every other morning. Meanwhile though, the weather continues fine. Wish you were here.