Friday, October 31, 2008

electoral

the last four days have been rough for me. i was completely without cable services: home phone (not that important), cable tv, and internet! seriously, it stressed me out to no end. i couldn't get into my classroom in the evenings and even had to stay at work until 9 pm on wednesday just to get a paper written. ridiculous!

i'm back in the game now (for good, i hope) and back to sharing my inane thoughts with my four readers (hello!).

in other news, the cold weather is kind of lovely. it's been rather brisk the last few mornings, but i welcome the temporary disappearance of the swelter and the pulling out of sweaters and woolies. plus, christmastime is coming soon!

before that, though, i have so much work to do (as usual) and much sleep and reading to catch up on. the election is a mere four days away and a week from now—barring no insane hanging-chad-type 'incidents'—we will know our fate for the next four years. regardless of outcome (although it's seeming pretty likely that obama will take it), this is a historic election and one that would seem to indicate our nation is slowly moving in the right direction as far as determining one's qualification for positions of import using more than the amount of pigment in his or her skin. don't get me wrong: we have miles and miles to go in order to put bigotry and hate behind us (and perhaps we never will), but there is hope in that regard.

whether you are republican or democrat, liberal, conservative, or somewhere in between, i hope for all of us that in the coming year, we can care a bit more about the person to our left or to our right; outstretch our hearts and work for justice for anyone being oppressed; dig deeper to meet the needs of people who are without; and seek to understand more than to be understood. this isn't lip service. it's real living with the goal of love in mind. and without it, what do we have to show at the end of the day except a paycheck and another 'thing' to acquire?

while i have been slightly panicked about the state of affairs in our country and in the world at large, i realized once again tonight that the way through our collective fears isn't from the 'right' outcome on november 4. instead, we must strive to elect ourselves to be the change we want to see in this world. so, be assured that i will be voting on tuesday. i'll be voting for all of us. every single one. every single day.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

le samedi matin

i love saturday mornings like this....sleeping in, nowhere to be for hours and hours, and a bevy of cooking shows on the dvr just waiting for me. my finance class is over as of tomorrow; i just have one final assignment to knock out before then, and though it's worth a sizeable chunk of my grade, it's one that i always do well on (kind of a 'how is this program contributing to your personal and professional growth' essay). now that the sleep has been fully shaken from my eyes, i'm planning something eggy, cheesy, and fruity for breakfast (not all in one dish, mind you) and then a long, lovely shower to restore me to some sense of normalcy (and to calm down my freshly cut hair, which, when i woke up, was standing on end).

and i'm happy to report to the world that the light chemical burns on my legs from yesterday's hair-removal incident seem to be subsiding! yeah. please don't even ask.

anyway, tonight i'll go hang out with some friends for a game night. hors d'oeuvres, taboo, and friends: i implore you to tell me how that can be anything other than rousing fun! tomorrow is brunch with salimah and 'the secret life of bees.' can't wait.

now then, giada de laurentiis and tyler florence are waiting for me. passez un bon week-end!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

wilson phillips sure did know what they were talking about when they said 'hold on for one more day'

i'm having one of those days where i sincerely wish my grad school experience were over. it's not that this week has been particularly harrowing (it hasn't)—more that i'm dreading the start of another class on monday and the realization that i have to gear myself up to deal with another prof and another group of potentially unknown fellow students. i know that i'm in the home stretch, and i know that at the end of this road there is a piece of paper with my name on it, a bit of recognition, and a raft of student loans to repay. go, me!

but along with this understanding is the more obvious fact that i'm not there yet. and oh, how i wish i were. oh, how i wish i could come home after work without thinking about all the stuff i have to do tonight...tomorrow....this weekend. what would i do with myself if i had time to read a book? for leisure!?

i will know this answer soon enough. not long after i turn 34, i will be done this program. i'm sure that the next 8 months will fly by and the next time i think of it, it'll be summertime and then...finito.

but is it okay in the meantime to tell you that i'm TIRED? and more importantly, that i'm TIRED of being TIRED? i hope it's okay, internets, because i'm saying it. and i mean it. i really, really mean it.

as soon as i hit 'publish post,' i'm going to go and turn on the heat (fall is decidedly here for reals this time), put on some comfy clothes, sit under a fleece blanket, and read a cookbook (or at least page through it and ponder the possibilities) while watching something mindless on tv. i've earned it today; i won't be doing any homework, and i feel unbelievably okay about that. and someday i won't have to justify anything one way or another. but i'm sure tonight you'll forgive me if i don't let myself think of such craziness just yet. it's a thursday and it's only october 23.

july, please come soon.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

pressure

my right eye may pop out of my head right now....seriously. the pressure in my sinuses is making me very unhappy and, consequently, i feel that i need to go lie down.

before i do, however, please allow me to say that i am so freaking tired of this election. i've tried to avoid writing about it in this space, because emotions are running very high and, frankly, what i think and who i'm voting for isn't really what i want to be discussing with the world at large. let me just say this: i'm legitimately scared that things are not going to get better anytime soon. i worry primarily about matters of economics, although every other issue (it seems) is closely related to and affected by our fiscal fitness (or lack thereof). either way, blech. that is my assessment in a nutshell.

now then, before my brain follows suit with my right eyeball, i am going to bed. tonight i am comforted by very little (in truth, the ibuprofen i took hasn't touched this pain) except this quote by our sixth president, john quincy adams: "always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost." i'm banking on that one....

Friday, October 17, 2008

stuff i really should pay attention to just now but can't seem to force myself to care about

the flip-flops and pink slippers on my living room floor
the receipts (need to go through them) on my coffee table
the gaZILLION magazines in the basket in the corner of my living room (please, if someone wants back issues of real simple, domino, and the like, please get in touch!)
the boxes in the other corner that once held treasures arriving from afar (but now need the dumpster)
the DVDs i took on vacation and haven't filed back in the alphabetized collection
the unfolded fleece blanket (needing folding) on the chair
the shirt i wore to work yesterday, draped over the fleece blanket
the unopened mail on the end table

actually, i'm going to stop there. this is making my place sound abysmal. it's not, really...it's just untidy.

BUT before i can concern myself with the likes of ALL that, i have a business plan to finish, dinner to make, and did i mention i'm sleepy just now?

ugh.

keep plugging away, sarah. there are miles to go before we sleep tonight.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

'mawwidge is what bwings us togevah today....'

in just a couple of hours, my dear friend melly will be getting hitched and i, along with salimah and my friend ness, will get to witness the whole event. seriously, i couldn't be more thrilled. i am also rather happy that i will be wearing my fun new brown jacket to the event (that is decidedly autumnal, with red flowers and lovely lush green leaves and other bits) with some caramel-colored sueded (not suede...just sueded/brushed cotton) pants, a red button-down dress shirt, and my usual chocolate brown crocs (the only shoe for people who can't really wear shoes other than athletic wear). i also got my nails freshly done last night, so now i at least look halfway put together. oh, and my hair is still looking a bit cute, not yet having grown out to the point of being utterly shmate.

anyhoo, i'm sure i'll have all kinds of philosophical reflections (as i often do when witnessing two adorable people getting mawweeeed), but for now i'm just happy. about all of it. and it's a beautiful day for two people in wuv. twoo wuv.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

el stink-o-rama

due to some ongoing water damage in my apartment (ceilings), i had to have some painters come out this afternoon to cover the spots. little did i know, however, that the gentlemen who would arrive at my place would take it upon themselves to practically repaint my bedroom closet and an entire corner of my living room. as a result (and because they didn't show up until after 3 pm), my apartment SMELLS like something fierce. i'm telling you - it's giving me the vapors!! anyone who knows me knows how sensitive i am to smells as it is - let alone el turpentino. sorry. i think i'm feeling like i can speak some pseudo spanish just now. again - THE VAPORS!

hopefully by the time the pres. debate is on tonight, things will have settled down a bit...or perhaps by then i will be completely high on paint fumes and too woozy to care. either way - all good! el yes!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

at the end of this road....

there's a chill in the air and i'm hunkering under blankets. fall has begun her yearly introduction and while i'm not yet quite ready for chilled-to-the-bones mornings, i am in need of the rich beauty and calm that only autumn can bring me. i'm not going to wax poetic about apples and fires and falling leaves tonight, though. what i'm experiencing can only be fixed with a journey that leads me somewhere i've never been. i need an open road tonight, lots of music, stars in the sky, and a river at the end of it all where i can sit in the dark and listen as it laps the shore. i want the time and space for all these words to pour out of me. God, how they ache to run from my fingers and drip from my hair (what's left of it these days).

do you understand me, internets? do you even know what it is i'm talking about? probably not....maybe it's just me here in this place of desperation and hope. maybe i'm the only one trembling like that red maple leaf, in all her glory, about to take the final plunge. it is fall. i have fallen. i am laid bare and in no way pretending otherwise. before winter comes with her burying snows and gray days, let it be known that i am still alive inside this place, still trying to keep the home fires burning, still hoping for more, still knowing that the river is there, waiting for me. and when i do go there...some day...you can rest assured that i'm not looking back.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

tag! you're it!

since my dear friend kim tagged me, i will accept her challenge. the deal is that i'm supposed to blog about 6 quirky or little-known facts about me. hmm...quirky. this shouldn't be super hard. so, out of my grab bag of weirdisms, i present you with the following list:

1. i'm not super well read. people find this incredibly hard to believe about me, since i have a fairly decent vocabulary and am a writer and editor and lover of all things 'word.' but really, it's true. i haven't read that much in the way of famous literature. in fact, i haven't read that much in the way of non-famous literature either. i consider this one of my great failures, if ever there were such a thing. i can trace its origins back to the first time someone forced me to read a book against my will and then conducted the most inane discussions about it afterward. it was high school...9th grade, i think. after that, something inside me that once had loved to read simply shut down, closed itself off. i became a rebel, hardly ever finishing a book assigned to me - except for the precious few that were so good, i finished them almost in spite of myself ('fahrenheit 451', 'the once and future king,' and a few others). in recent years, i've tried to allow myself to rediscover the reader inside of me, but with jobs that have involved nothing but reading and then my admittance into grad school, that goal has been put on the back burner for now. some day, i will return to you, literature. i promise.

2. i own both barry manilow and jay-z albums and am unashamed of both. i don't think it's nearly as socially acceptable to spin barry these days; however, i can't help it. he writes the songs that make the whole world sing, people! and besides, once i finish belting out 'weekend in new england' (tear jerker!), i can 'justify my thug' with my man jay. and believe me - i'm all gangsta underneath this suburban exterior ;).

3. i am a HUGE sap. i don't let much of the world see this about me, but i am deeply affected by the smallest things sometimes - the way people look at each other, a particularly moving commercial, a little kid wearing glasses, one perfectly executed note in a song....good grief. hallmark should hire me.

4. i collect cookbooks but don't really use them. yes, i'm a foodie. yes, i love to cook. yes, i also love to read recipes. but do i use them? not much. only for certain baking where you have to be very precise with measurements do i pull out the instructions. otherwise, the whole recipe thing is more for inspiration than anything else. oh, and my current collection is in the neighborhood of 200 to 250, i would imagine. i haven't counted in awhile. i particularly love when i find something completely fun in a used bookstore. it's like treasure hunting! (n.b.: i also apparently collect stationery - considering how much of it i own - but in no way use that either. anyone need some snail mail?)

5. i talk to myself. a lot. this in and of itself shouldn't sound all that shocking (especially since i live alone), but when you combine it with the fact that i not only talk to myself but sometimes ANSWER myself as well, it can get a little concerning sometimes. i will make lists and give myself lectures and ask and answer questions - all out loud. i'm perfectly aware that i'm doing it, you see. sometimes i'm the best one to tell myself what i need to hear, and apparently i have no problem doing it - whether at home or at a traffic light.

6. for all of the dreams i have of one day owning my own food-related business, i am more and more fully convinced that at some point in the future, i am going to write a book. there's been a novel brewing inside of me for about 10 years and in those quiet moments when all else fades away, it's there, just waiting to be written. perhaps when i finish this master's degree, i'll reward myself with a writing vacation or something.

so, there you have it. nothing too shocking or appalling, i guess. i hereby tag salimah, cat, lynn, kim b., holly, adam, and jenn, if y'all are up to the challenge!

Friday, October 03, 2008

marked for life

on sunday night i managed to burn a crescent moon into my hand on the inside of my toaster oven that was heated up to a balmy 450 degrees. since then, day by day, i have watched my skin try its best to regain some composure as the mark has turned from a harsh, blistery pink to a patchy, deepening mauve, not unlike a shade of lipstick i currently own, i might add. i feel fairly certain that within another week, it will have faded even more, and yet with what i know about my skin, i am certain that i will see evidence of that slip for years to come (if not forever). perhaps it is my life's way of reminding me that it's hard to move on from certain events entirely unscathed.

but the marks are also a reminder that you can heal, you can move past pain, you can watch as your resilient self attacks a problem area and does a valiant job dealing with all the ramifications so that you can get on with your life.

i am certain that if you could open up my soul, you would find hundreds of crescent moons—some tiny, some long and dramatically arched. but i can say without hesitation that there is no blistering reality in my life at this time...no pain that prevents me from moving freely from one situation to the next...no limitation on what i can do or be or feel. there are marks there, to be sure, but they are the lipstick smudges of my past, a laundry list of all that i have overcome. they are the marks that remind me on a daily basis: sarah, you're stronger than all of this....