Sunday, May 30, 2004

back home from a trip to the beach.

sunburnt and happy. drinking a bit of shiraz, quick blog and then a vinegar bath followed by slathering of aloe vera is the evening's plan. and then, settling into the bed, tired body (been battling waves and hunting crabs and bodysurfing this morning!! doesn't even seem like the same day) happy for the rest.

tomorrow i work, and hopefully swipe a significant sliver of the day's time to catch up and blog.

it's good to be home.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

i tried to post something earlier today but it somehow got lost.

work became crazy again. i've got a headache the size of cambodia. the decaf coffee isn't helping any. our network is wanky.

and complaining on my blog is never a good sign.

Monday, May 24, 2004

the bolivar ferry

things are restored to order. a coy is living at the beach this summer.

my cousin called me tonight. i could hear seagulls calling, and the booming recording that has played on the ferries that carry semis and vans of families from island to peninsula (and vice versa) for my forever, karl yelling ecstatically into the phone

i'm on the bolivar ferry!

and me matching his excitement, what?! -- why?

i'm living down here for the summer!


i love that goddamn ferry. back when i wanted to be cremated i told mom to throw my ashes off the back, next to the families feeding stale bread to seagulls.* (i guess i liked the idea of living in that channel forever, delicate shnn particles dancing with dolphins and fishes...)

my best childhood memories are of galveston and bolivar peninsula, crystal beach specifically. my grandparents are buried there.

uncle mike had a house down there. grandmother coy lived there until her body broke down. and now it's in the ground there, with stickerburrs and little yellow flowers (the product of what some would consider weeds) flourishing above her... i remember flying kites there, bodysurfing in the half-assed waves, the smell of warm cheap beer on the uncles' breaths, chickenfights, swimming desperately for the sandbar (when i was younger i expected someone to be selling something out there -- beer and candies handed over a counter from a shop set up in the middle of the ocean)... mom and dad would put the backseat of the station wagon down and we three kids would stretch out, reading library books and eating cashews, easy cheese and ritz, pecan sandies and sucking down cokes and we'd sing together, family songs about cows and nellies and bellies and barns. the excitement was palpable as we traveled from Arlington to heaven. the beach was magical. it held promises that would always certainly be realized -- uncles tossing you into waves, your best friend cousins, puppies and kitties and aunts preparing barbecue and potato salad and stories told while we all sat in folding beach chairs, bodies cradled in the stretched criss-crossing weave of plastic fibers that hung on light aluminum frames... i love that tired old beach. great uncle john (now gone) pouring wine into our cups at fourteen it's a special occasion!, uncle pat's laugh, babs the dog who'd become mean after a porch fell on her, stories of cinder midnight coy, the three-legged dog who teamed up with a cat to defeat a rabid collie... shaggy dog stories. twenty people crashing in one beach house, freezing under blankets because uncle bubba cranked up the window unit. waking up early and having a hushed serious conversation with aunt jackie over muffins while the room slept. kelly dumping my cat gumbo into the kiddy pool. catching tadpoles in the pond in front of the house. pulling figs from the tree. justin in his cape. jet skis skimming the meager waves. the simple water slides, trudging up the hill with a mat that you'd lose halfway down... hopping on the slide with four cousins, a laughing slippery backwards swirl down to a final splash. folk songs at the stingaree bar/restaurant. buying cokes at the only store nearby. touring the mansions that survived the hurricane at the turn of the twentieth century. malts and poboys at the strand. the seawall. the surf shops that jut into the water, perched on stilts -- the one that was once a speakeasy/gambling space, that literally had gaming tables and machines that flipped into the wall when the authorities showed...


i love the beach.

*mom resisted my "death plans" because she was concerned about my resurrection... i always imagined the ashes of the dead church creating a great stir at the bottom of the ocean, kicking up sand, startling a sea horse and a baby shark as the particles of old humans swirled to the surface and performed an intricate dance of exchange as they found their origin, climbing the heavens as they took on the shape of human beings who walked long ago.

incidentally, my friend damon wants to freeze himself (and his 30 pound cat) when he dies. his family is quite concerned about the implications for resurrection.


i rearranged my apartment. given that it's a one-room loft, there weren't a lot of options -- but the change is drastic. the parts that i generally look at, that i face (given the configuration of my furniture) are completely different.

i think this is a good thing. given that we humans are changing beings, it feels good to change our surroundings. it's the reason that i cut my hair on occasion - you want a physical manifestation of the change within.

something interesting: i moved my computer desk to have a better/different view of fair park. of course, i see nothing but plants and the back of the firefighter museum from the new situation. and so, i think more now about how i've moved my laptop to the bed (i'm esconsced in its redness currently)... when i pause and think between sentences (either read or written) i stare at the same thing/space that i have for a year now. (there's a tall thin tower with a star on it that i'd show you if i could pull the pictures off my damn phone)....


justin is moving to texas this fall. i can't speak my joy and excitement enough. justin's coming!!... concerts, music, a pint of beer shared, conversation. toobing.

much less seeing linds again!

they have a cat! they're coming!


the best thing about karl staying at the beach this summer is this: he and his father are in the process of reconciliation.

in conversation.


it's good to be home, folks. beringer is asleep, curled at my feet. berk keeps walking over the keyboard.

i'm happy to be here.

i have responses to the emergent convention in the works.

but for now i go to work. to make some books.

wish i could take the cats with me.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

blogging from the emergent convention...
it's hard to focus with a good few hundred pastors singing hymns about fifty feet from me (they're in the second half of this ballroom)


caputo is incredible. i need to make more time to read. and write. and think.

Monday, May 17, 2004

The Pop Prophets
(Newsweek article on Left Behind)

Jenkins takes issue with a previous NEWSWEEK piece that called "Left Behind" a "Red State" phenomenon, but statistics from the publisher, Tyndale, bear this out: 71 percent of the readers are from the South and Midwest, and just 6 percent from the Northeast. (Hence Tyndale's sponsorship of a NASCAR racer, with the unlucky logo LEFT BEHIND.) The "core buyer" is a 44-year-old born-again Christian woman, married with kids, living in the South.

Jenkins says: "Pedestrian writing, thin characters-I can handle the criticism," he says. "I write to pedestrians. And I am a pedestrian. I write the best I can. I know I'm never going to be revered as some classic writer. I don't claim to be C. S. Lewis. The literary-type writers, I admire them. I wish I was smart enough to write a book that's hard to read, you know?"

Friday, May 14, 2004

The Judas 13 Tooth

what a day. an explosion of pain, activity and craziness that ended an absurdly stressful handful of weeks.

and i still have a spaghetti dinner to throw!

after staying up half the night with loud bass neighbors downstairs and excruciating tooth pain, i awoke at six to cook. i harvested, chopped, steamed, simmered and sauteed for two and a half hours, changed shirts and hopped in the car.

after about a couple hours of working diligently, the extra strength tylonal quit working, and pain overtook my mouth.

and then, the desperate search for a dentist, and significant worry about paying him.

somewhere in the midst of all that one of my neighbors thought my spaghetti sauce smelled like cat shit, i found out that i need a root canal on monday ($800) and several tears were shed. my regular pharmacy doesn't accept my new insurance, i nearly ran out of gas, i didn't have change for the parking meter downtown (where the fancyschmance dentist office resides) and


the nice dentist took pity on me. he told jokes about dentist conventions, and how the offending tooth (number 13) is just bad. he backed this up with anecdotal evidence, and i learned that the number 13 in general is thought to be unlucky because of "the whole last supper thing" with judas and all.

which doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but this was before he gave me prescription strength advil and amoxicillin.

and so, i move bravely forward into the evening. you've gotta come try some of my food if i'm still serving it up after a day like this, right?

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

shit shit shit.

this is starting to get ridiculous. i just found out that michael turner's birthday party is tonight.

at this point there seem to be two scenarios for the evening: work and/or sleep


at least our internet is back up.
still nothing from india. i keep waking up every hour to check email, ready to edit like mad.

this time around a charlie horse woke me up instead of the alarm....

Monday, May 10, 2004

just got in from work. about to climb into bed.

i made a call to india today. trav, you'd have been proud of the indian accent that i sported for at least a couple of hours....

i have so much i want to say, little parentheses of thought that punctuate my day....

but there's no time. i must collapse into slumber, so i can awaken to book files in the early early morn.

2AM grins at me from the near future, gently mocking me, begging me to count the hours down on tired fingers.

and in the midst of all this bbbooks business, and the sleepiness and such, a hopkins is preparing to come into the world.

my nose tingles with the hint of joyful tears. the corners of my mouth tilt up; i'm soon to meet a new friend.

there's a new life, guys! a baby! where in the hell did she come from? did david and melissa really make her? what will she make of herself?

what will she be doing twenty-five years from now?

life is amazing. i don't understand it, but i'm grateful to experience it.

i don't know if i can communicate the wonder, the joy of watering my plants. watching them stretch up and out... of beringer curled in my lap, or berkley touching her nose to mine. of sitting next to mom and granny on the porch swing on mother's day,

and the puppies
and brandon
the ivy
the supine figure stretched across the bed

and more
and music backing us all up, a grand movie of meaning and contingency.

(supporting argument)

i've never seen a toe explode.
the argument: what is weirder, ears or toes?

in telling leah about my moonblog post last night, i apparently used the phrase "half-hung moon"

leah was disappointed that this phrase was not included in said post

the moon last night was certainly half-hung
luna hangs low half-heartedly in the sky, a white-yellow moon pie carelessly chewed to a fraction of itself

just got in from work. on the way home i saw the remnants of a wreck, the car still smoking from the collision. i called 911 for the first time ever, and they were very polite and sincere and had already heard of the accident. my car and i gingerly picked our way through the glass and plastic, gradually gaining speed, seeing flashing red and blue behind us, reassuring as it could be

given the two bodies on the side of the highway surrounded by people


and i have work to do

and i'm not sure whether to sleep now, or wait for india to respond with our book interior

and i suddenly think that maybe part of being an adult is not being able to call someone when you are crying at 3am.

in college everyone was awake at 3.

now i think a call made this late would warrant something bigger than this, the moment in which i find myself.

and maybe, in this space of what it is that i define as "adulthood", i have to spend these seconds and minutes alone. with the cats and plants and lonely less-than-half-moon.

with the cats and plants and lonely less-than-half-moon.

Sunday, May 09, 2004

leah just said to blogger

"stop trying to be so user-friendly"


we have enough stress working in the evening hours, deadlines hovering like sad recalcitrant vultures. blogger shouldn't fuck us like this.

(oh, it totally shouldn't) -- leah says
twilight from the office

all the beige office building sides glow with hope against the grey-reaching-for-blue skies

my email messages fly to india like magic
i can see the skylights on the building across the street, hopeless square bubbles attempting to defy the space of "office" -- confining god-knows-what (i love that phrase) so nearby

it's hard to focus with such a compelling series of images resting just to my right. the trees seem to crouch among the buildings, crying to be released from the concrete and landscaping. from here you can see the power lines pressing them down, pushing them out...

i need some taos. some beach. some brandon.

and yet the two humans that determine whether or not these books come out on time are working right now. over the night. so i must press forward. continue. focus.

i'm resistent to change. is there a way to make blogger look like it used to?

i'm at work. i figured out who locked me in my office.

i'm creeped out.

more later, i hope. i still can't upload images, and blogger help has yet to answer my query. that's unlike them.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

folks, i'm tired.


and apparently i'm losing it. i have somehow managed to lock myself inside my office.

i want so badly to go home to my hungry cats. oh shit, i have to buy cat food on the way home. provided that the building ever sends my saviour to unlock the deadbolt that mysteriously got locked today.

they'd better come quick. i need to use the restroom.

taking a brief break from work to blog.

thank you thank you thank you leah for stopping by the office before your movie.

Thursday, May 06, 2004

listen to what rush limbaugh has to say, for good measure

May 4:

CALLER: It was like a college fraternity prank that stacked up naked men --

LIMBAUGH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?

May 3:

LIMBAUGH: And these American prisoners of war -- have you people noticed who the torturers are? Women! The babes! The babes are meting out the torture.

LIMBAUGH: You know, if you look at -- if you, really, if you look at these pictures, I mean, I don't know if it's just me, but it looks just like anything you'd see Madonna, or Britney Spears do on stage. Maybe I'm -- yeah. And get an NEA grant for something like this. I mean, this is something that you can see on stage at Lincoln Center from an NEA grant, maybe on Sex in the City -- the movie. I mean, I don't -- it's just me.

sorry doesn't cut it


as i type it's two till seven pm, central time.

in seconds americans will train their eyes on their televisions, and emote as the final episode of friends airs.


i prepared to eat dinner tonight in front of the computer screen while catching up on news, as i often do.

not a good idea.


Bush 'sorry for humiliation' of Iraqi prisoners

Roberts said he wants to know "why on Earth" Bush and members of the Senate Armed Services and Senate Intelligence committees didn't learn of the extent of the abuse until the news media aired photographs showing naked Iraqis in humiliating positions as American soldiers smiled.

Members of Congress also want to know why they weren't briefed last week when Rumsfeld testified just hours before CBS aired photos of the abuse.

Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Illinois, said, "The secretary testified without even indicating to the members of the Senate that this story existed, about to be disclosed to the American people. That is unacceptable...."

Thursday morning, Rumsfeld canceled a planned speech in Philadelphia to focus on his Friday testimony. He met Thursday morning with four Republican members of the Senate Armed Service Committee.

One of those members, Jeff Sessions of Alabama, told CNN that Rumsfeld was upbeat and confident. He said Rumsfeld believes there's a "rational" explanation for everything that happened in the prison."

Rumsfeld in the hot seat on Iraq abuses

President Bush told Rumsfeld on Wednesday that he was "not satisfied" at the way he received information about the allegations, a senior administration official told CNN,

Six soldiers have been criminally charged in the case and six others have been reprimanded, with two of those relieved of duty, Rumsfeld said at a Pentagon briefing Tuesday.

For his part, Rumsfeld says the Pentagon has done everything right.

"This is a serious problem, and it's something the department is addressing," he told the Pentagon briefing Tuesday. "The system works. The system works."

But at his meeting with Bush, Rumsfeld also made clear that he also felt "he didn't know some things he should have," according to the senior administration official, along with another official.

New Prison Images Emerge

i see at least seven people in uniform in just the first picture shown in this article (of naked men bound in the prison walkway.) that's just what this one image has caught. how is it possible that only twelve soldiers have been reprimanded/charged?


i'm so sorry.

sorry i don't know what to do. sorry that these things are happening.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

it's an understatement to say that i'm overwhelmed.
reminder: spill the scoop on amazon

Monday, May 03, 2004

daniel just said

we become the things we mock


i've been informed that that is actually take on a U2 lyric. leah would say
listening to Blink 182 . my favorite part is the screaming crowds after each two-minute song.

Sunday, May 02, 2004

per beth and OMG

10 years ago I:
1. played soccer in high school (not too well, i must admit)
2. fell into what i thought was love with pete, a high school dropout.
3. hated my father with frightening intensity
4. was a backslidden fundie
5. learned to drive in papa's red and white ford. they still have that truck.

5 years ago I:
1. was in the process of learning that i can't function in "casual relationships"
2. encountered the most acute depression of my life
3. wrote a ton of songs and journaled like crazy
4. took a new testament class that prompted me to "lose my faith"
5. managed to have a lot of fun and build a lot of memories despite all the mess of our faux-beat existence
6. called my father; began the process of reconciliation
7. ...have a lot more to say. this was an amazingly formative time for me.

3 years ago (I):
1. graduated from college and worked for the man
2. the most amazing human i know moved to north carolina
3. met a brilliant saladhead named damon
4. lived with justin and adrian (and jill, really) and threw kickass parties in our dump apartment (and got a cat!)
5. discovered yoga, and built to spill and modest mouse and the beta band and sparklehorse
6. stopped eating meat

2 years ago I:
1. began my career in publishing
2. moved into a loft, and lived alone for the first time
3. began blogging on diaryland
4. adopted a little black monkey named berkley
5. began writing in earnest

1 year ago I:
1. made contact with david, triggering significant change in my social life
2. saw our first book published. and it kicked ass, both in sales and content
3. found religion without religion
4. discovered rorty (and later caputo) and (more) people with whom i could talk deconstruction, differance, binaries, etc
5. discovered something i've yet to find create language for.

Yesterday I:
1. spent the day moving our office upstairs
2. left another message for the squires
3. had to pull out a blanket (because it was cold... in may!)
4. loved the rain
5. slept well

Today I:
1. watched meet the press and complained about the commercials
2. watered the plants and planned the repotting
3. took a hot bath first thing because i was sore
4. plan to meet folks for brunch. it's beautiful outside!
5. plan to clean and rearrange furniture and possibly step down into the bubbling goodness of the hot tub
6. called people to tell them to come to brunch
7. told beringer to get out of the way (i can't see! you're standing in front of the monitor!)
8. made green tea
9. blogged
10. filled out a list thing. i love these!

Tomorrow I:
1. will go to work in a new, vibrant yellow office
2. will not let stress take me
3. will yoga
4. will ask daniel again if he wants a dog
5. will remember, if just for a second, how damn good my life is right now

Top 5 Musicians Lately:
1. Wilco
2. Tom Waits
3. Sparklehorse
4. Polyphonic spree
5. Damien Rice

5 things i'm wearing:
1. sleep shorts
2. tank top
3. glasses

3 bad habits I have:
1. general disorganization, clutter
2. cracking of knuckles
3. being late

My biggest joy at the moment:
beringer in my lap. the plants soaking in the sun. music. sunlight. 0

i can barely stand this; i feel like i'm continually leaning over to the side, perhaps with one eye closed.

i sold my couch yesterday, and then spent a good nine hours putting together office chairs and industrial shelving units, lifting and unpacking boxes of books. etc. at the new office

which meant that i ran out of energy* by the time i returned home. and so did not clean up, or rearrange things or anything. so my loft's chi is off. there's a blank where once there was a country couch (in pastel plaid!)

*(contrary to dan's enthusiastic opinion, energy doesn't come in cans. perhaps awakeness (and/or alertness) does -- that's how they should market it. consciousness in a can

i've got eleven tomatoes growing. one of the plants is nearly three feet high.


i'm watching meet the press.

sunday morning tv is great, but the commercials aren't any better than normal. this toyota commercial just pissed me off. it showed a family, and there were voice overs from the children. the little girl said "before you know it, i'll be getting married." the boy said "before you know it, i'll be going off to college." and then they showed pictures of the grand canyon and shit, and i think they were wanting you to buy their suv so you could take cheesy family vacations with your children who have appropriate gender identities and the expectations that accompany that.


my cats like popcorn.

Saturday, May 01, 2004

it feels like post-afternoon rain late summer taos outside (especially if you lean out the window right over the rosemary plant)

i had dreams that my cats jumped right out the window into the courtyard. i was so freaked that i jumped out of the window too. later i dreamt that kausar was a barber.
i began the day (i know, this is getting to be a habit or something) in a mild depression

but i got into work early, and i'm still here -- basking in the warm yellow of our new office, doing my damnest to make books happen without any disasters.

i'm crazy busy, but i'm in that space of feeling accomplished, on top of things... i keep surprising myself with my competence.

i don't know if you'd believe me if i told you all the things that i did today. i guess if you lack a burning passion for the field of publishing, you'd probably not be too interested.

special thanks to one ms wilson for the support and such.

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