Archive for December, 2010

22
Dec
10

this is what we do

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22
Dec
10

crazy

See post below as reference. (“It is falling apart”)

But we recieved an email back from the sponsors of “Race to Nowhere” and we have access to the movie for the next two weeks.

We had petitioned them as teachers, trying to get a screening for our local schools, and they simply gave us access to the film, and now we have yet to watch it.

We are contemplating doing a screening at our home if you are interested… but we will have those details later.

We must start small, right?

21
Dec
10

it is falling apart

yes, It is all falling apart.

And I am in the middle of it.

I have spoken with some of you about this.

It is going to get very bad.

Something has to be done.

I am thinking deeply about what IT is that needs to happen.

I am in this for the long haul.

But it is very serious.

It is the future.

Watch this to at least think about watching something important.

We need to think about what WE, the adults, can do to fix this, change this, make a difference.

WE need to do something.

21
Dec
10

special to me

I just returned home from a four day trip to New York City. I had a most amazing time. I’m not sure how a city actually enlarges your brain, but I think that is what the big apple does to me. I experience so much, pass by so many people on so many paths, listen with an open heart to the discussions and looks on the subway, and my heart and brain actually seem to swell to meet all this stimulus. I’m not sure that actually happens, but I feel like it does. I love new york because I seem to love humanity all the more when I leave. Thank you new york.

The friend I was staying with, the very dear friend lives in true brooklyn, no hipster, trendy neighborhood, but way out on the Q, far from where many people would live. Her neighborhoods are almost as exciting as Manhattan itself and we spent time walking and eating in her part of town a bit. She is in school, so we rode into the city and she went to class and I went exploring. Well, I went to Central Park in 20 degree weather all decked out for a run. And I did run, the loop, yes I did. I saw a man propose to a woman in a carriage with shaking hands (weather, mind you) and I saw a few other crazy folks out on the path with me. I saw the ice rink and strawberry fields and the great lawn and the met and well, I saw it all. And I froze. So, I took a break and stepped into the met for a few hours to warm up. There I looked like a sweaty strange character, with my neon orange shoes (don’t ask!) and my running hat, but none the less, it was fantastic to take in the warmth and the amazing talent and history the museum had to offer. That afternoon I discovered a wonderful truth and that is running is a brilliant way to see a city. It is efficient, warm, and none the less, good for you. Plus you get to wear comfortable shoes. That night my friend and I went to book launch, very interesting, and Korean – fusion for dinner.

The food in new york is fantastic and never ceases to amaze me. I can’t log all the meals and snacks and drinks consumed, but they are all good. I’ll note only a few.

The next day, my friend has class again and I am off to visit another of my dear friends, who lives in williamsburg, brooklyn, a train ride or two away. I get the experience of navigating the subways on my own, and who knew? not too difficult. I ride alone and wonder if it is stamped on my forehead that I do not live here. Jeni begged me to wear a pin on my lapel that says, “I am not a tourist, I live here” but I wasn’t sure that was convincing. But I make it to my friend Emily and Curtis’ place without a hitch. I must admit their location is stellar. Emily and I get to spend a wonderful day walking, talking, eating, just being together. We even went to her school, Pratt, which was gorgeous. We return to their apartment to eat Nutty Buddy’s, my all-time favorite snack food, along with a helping of sorpressata and cheese from the deli below. Jeni joins us and we even skip dinner just to stay home, eat the aforementioned snacks, and drink gin and tonics. It is one of sweetest moments in life to see three of your favorite people in life get to know each other and at the end of the night exchange numbers to hang out. My heart is happy.

Jeni and I leave that evening, ny late, to meet another friend of hers. I have no idea where we are heading but dancing is in the plans. We wander the streets of brooklyn looking for the meeting place, only to find an empty place. We re-plan, now it is 1 am, and stop off at another neighborhood bar. Guess what, dancing is in the bar’s plans! Queer night, apparently! If you’re not sure what that looks like… just ask me later. But we danced our asses off until 4 am and then came home and collapsed into bed.

Sleep until 1 pm the next day. (Haven’t done that since junior high). Regardless, I am rested. We grab a delicious lunch at Mimi’s Hummus in my favorite brooklyn neighborhood, ditmas park. Filled with big victorian homes on tree lined streets, it is an enigma in this city. We then head into the city to do a few touristy things. We exit the train around rockefeller center and enter pure chaos. It is a beautiful chaos of tourists and their families all striving for the best view of this fabled tree. My main joy is offering to take pictures of families, telling them I don’t charge and I won’t steal their cameras and phones. I guess I look trustworthy, because they allow this gesture. We pass the window displays which are strangely untraditional, and strangely disturbing and un-Christmasy. We walk down the block to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, a huge Catholic church. It is packed and Jeni and I spend a good hour walking by all the altars to the different saints (fascinating) and we watch as a choir from the church performs. This a catholic church and we are blown away by the faces on the altar singing carols. Middle eastern Catholics, Asian Catholics, Latino Catholics, Black Catholics, White Catholics, who would have known that this was a snapshot of the Catholic Church in America? We take a train to the lower east side for dinner, get a drink, and head to one of our favorite restaurants, little giant. We have a fantastic final meal, indulgent yes, but rich mainly with conversation and insights. Jeni and I can talk for four days straight about everything under the sun. This dinner was a treat, a signature on the weekend, a symbol of what we both love. We head home as I must leave the next morning. No 4 am bedtime this night. But yes, it is of course late as we hop in the taxi, ny late.

I leave the next morning, eager to return to those I love that await me at home, four little hands and feet and the lips of the man I love.

But new york always leaves me like a friend, like that friend that makes me think and feel and taste and love and be in that moment.

I love new york.

But mainly I love the people that make her so special to me.

Thank you.

 

07
Dec
10

not easy

I think this really matters. EB

 

The nights are lonelier.

The fear is tangible. The grief of lost life can be felt in your bones.

Anniversaries and birthdays are missed.

Your children cry for their dada who is half a world away.

You cry too.

You miss phone calls and panic because inside you are thinking that one call could have been your last.

Your friends with civilian husbands tell you they could never do it.

Most of the time, you think you can’t do it either.

Every time the doorbell rings when you are not expecting it, you become nauseous.

You peek out the window to make sure a government car is not parked in the driveway.

Unexpected visitors often find a not as warm greeting.

You shower with your cell phone.

When a fellow shopper asks you the time, you tell her the time in Afghanistan.

Inevitably, someone asks you if your husband has killed anyone.

You control your rage and tell the truth.

You have never asked.

Taken from, “In Their Own Words: Soldiers and Their Families on the Afghanistan War” excerpt written by:

Kelly Robinson

Unit: 4th ID spouse

Location: Colorado Springs, Colo.


05
Dec
10

I have seen some bad movies recently. But today, I watched a couple of scenes, from Closer, which came out about 6 years ago. It is a movie people write off because it is vulgar, uncomfortable, and strange. But I really love it. I can’t pinpoint why exactly, but there is so much pain and loneliness hidden in this little movie. Watch it at your own risk, but the following dialogue is interesting.

what do you think of the art?

It’s a lie.

It’s a bunch of sad strangers photographed beautifully

and all the glittering assholes that appreciate art say it’s beautiful

because that is what they want to see.

But the people in the photos are sad.

and alone.

But the pictures make the world seem beautiful.

And then the exhibition is reassuring.

Which makes it a lie.

And everyone loves a big fat lie.

05
Dec
10

notables

Been up to the usual, keeping myself busy, preparing for the holdays. I want to blog more, but I find my mind far from the computer during the work week. Here are a few small happenings…

  • only a few more teaching days until the holidays. This equates to the best Christmas present ever to us teachers. Friday, December 17th at noon, that is the true Christmas day.
  • I am being extra naughty this year and ending for the holidays on December 15th, skipping out on the last 2 days of the semester. I am traveling to New York City to see some amazing friends. It is a gift to myself.
  • I ran 20 miles yesterday.
  • I ran 20 miles yesterday without an ipod. This statement is worthy of its own bullet point, because all through my running/exercising days I have debated which way I like to run. With or without distraction? Yesterday I went with no distractions and I am glad I did. I do like to hear my own footsteps, breathing, the wind in the trees, and best of all, run with and get to know people along the path. That is the best part, the people who are in it with me. So, for now, I am a no ipod girl. I’m sure that will change again soon.
  • The children are so thrilled with the holidays. Yesterday we went to a christmas tree farm and cut down our own tree. It was fun. And we came home with some sort of cypress tree, who knew? It is gorgeous however. Today we will decorate, later, though, later.
  • One of the most exciting things recently was that we purchased a pop up camper. We are now going to be pulling that little thing behind us on all our adventures. It is used,  a little worn, but definitely fun. We have it set up in the driveway now, which I am sure the neighbors love.
  • Overall, we are all just waiting for the break around here. Teaching, reading, running, playing with children, and trying to enjoy the season.

Hope you are good and well. Enjoy this season.