1.18.2013

le singe et la musique

"I want to make sure Eden doesn't have to take care of the monkey."

"Monkey" is my boss' word for law library maintenance responsibility. He knows it is bogging me down and keeping me from doing my main/primary job of manning the post up front. I feel so understood as he explains to the rest of them that, whatever the solution, it needs to be out of Eden's hair (this is a feeling I've not experienced for a good while).

But now that he refers to it as a monkey, I am somehow endeared to it, as if it's a rambunctious pet that I've lost patience with and given up on. I'd love to care for a monkey, like you wouldn't believe. Alas, this is not a zoo, and I am not a zoo-keeper.

I'm relieved not to be responsible for the monster anymore. Now, I love libraries, do NOT get that bit wrong. But maintaining a law library is such a left-brained ordeal, and I am such a right-brained being. It's enough to make one's head fairly implode, if I may say so. Bittersweet partings. Not really.

Orchestral vibrations made the Devon lobby tremble at lunch today. Those strings, oh - those magnificent hums...they sewed themselves into my senses like threads of varying size. Some were fine and slippery, others were thick-coarse-gritty. The cello solo hit me the hardest. It's the instrument I'm learning next.

There were tears, though I'm not sure if anyone else had them. You know that feeling when someone grabs your hand and runs, out of the blue? You lose your balance and are swept away, with no mind of your own for a moment. That is what the music did to me.

The oyster roll is TONIGHT. Sushi roll, I mean. It has red snapper inside, too. "Red Snapper" is fun to say. So is "Oyster", which is also fun to write. I get to say both tonight.

On a completely random note (and in preparation for the next blog post): I've discovered a few places where the color and texture seems to yank the creativity in my soul right out into the open in manifestations of all kinds. This knowledge is revolutionary.

1.14.2013

golden evenings

Unwitting breakfast for dinner at the Grey Owl (spelled with an 'e' because that's just the way to do it) over the weekend. I don't even have to try anymore, apparently. Has it truly come to this with me and breakfast? Are we really that inseparable?
- peony loose-leaf tea.
- americano, but only half the water as usual.
- bacon bleu cheese quiche.
- peach scone (the moistest perfect scone you ever knew).
- one whole grapefruit.

On the topic of food (it's a good topic; don't judge harshly), this weekend I discovered a newly-opened sushi bar that serves an oyster roll. I'll say it again: AN OYSTER ROLL. The count-down to the mind-blowing experience begins now. This joint even offers a low table where you can sist on floor cushions, true to Japanese tradition. Good form, Oklahoma.

Three (count them) free crème brûlées last night. Historic. It's nice to have friends who work in hotels, and even nicer when the friends are just fascinating.

Golden haze. Rose-tinted glasses my foot, that's what I say. Yellow is where it's at. My little room is filled with a candlelight-colored glow these evenings. Normally I want stark darkness for sleeping, but a golden haze has comforting and romanticizing qualities like you wouldn't believe. It basically puts stars in my eyes and makes me sigh a lot. This is quite conducive for dreaming.

I spoke with a young woman named Randie today. That name strikes a chord in me.

Speaking of chords being struck, how do you explain the phenomenon of constantly being grabbed by this thing, or that violin strain, or an expression on someone's face? I'm currently hunting for a campground to pitch at for a winter weekend trip...browsing through some talented photographer's files filled with mesas and little mountains and big-horned sheep, watercolour skies and stones turned orange by the sunsets - and I'm crying. A marvel, this is.

As Chesterton encourages, be a pygmy. There is wonder in not being "big enough", in being overwhelmed by something. Imagine shrinking to the size of a locust, and watch your horizons expand before your very eyes.

Make mountains out of molehills.

1.08.2013

the delicious cycle of ache and free-spiritedness

For each of (the four of) you reading, since you are likely free spirits and scouts and gypsy souls and hunters and purveyors, it only makes sense that you're looking. You're seeking out your next adventure, the journey you never expected, the breakfast of a lifetime.

You are daydreaming of snowflakes landing and melting on the back of your neck. Of the rough hands of a weathered, steady sailor as he pulls you onto his lobstering boat. Of coffee that is truly deserving of the title "divine". You already know about the subway cars, the trolley lines, the Vespas for rent by the day...you know without knowing. You long for the scrapes and mosquito bites that linger fondly after a rainforest excursion. You pine for the smell of fresh earth under your nails and moss tangles in your hair. Biting wind. Wafting scent. Heated hotel blankets.

Ears are aching for that foreign voice who belts at the opera house with painted sets and velvet chairs, or the one who croons in a dimly-lit back-alley bar where not even her mother knows she goes. But the voices...OH those voices. When someone means / feels what they sing, you can feel it, too. The emotion is delivered right into your lap and you can't sit still, or ignore the rush flooding up your spine and to your cheeks.

Enough, already. You know what you want, you just might not know you know it yet. If I may be of any assistance in your search, here are some inklings and belt-notches I've had for inhaling life:

- take an E.S.L. (English as a Second Language) teaching course. It may just enable you to live abroad with a highly sought-after job already in place. Learning English is the cat's pajamas, you know.
- write a song dedicated to a perfect stranger (best to write it with the perfect stranger, if you ask me).
- go to work in a distillery. Scotch.
- make someone give you surfing lessons.
- buy a one-way plane ticket to a city that's lodged within your very being. Leave your trip open-ended. Don't try to write the end before you've gotten there. Just see what happens.
- have a proper English breakfast with Scotch eggs and Scotch and thick coffee (preferably at sunrise, and on a riverbank).
- consider things from an animal's perspective. You never know what kinds of things they're thinking.
- go on a date with a bartender who relishes and revels in life behind the wood. Ask him/her about the most interesting guests they've served.
- spend the night in a hammock in the Yucatan jungle under a barely-there palapa, falling asleep to the sounds of the resident jaguars' throaty words. (I've done this, and it's every bit as glamourous as it sounds.)
- put your face into the snow. I mean right in, without hesitating - that's the key.
- be outright contrary in your apparel for a day. Watch how emboldening a controversial outfit can be.
- take a long weekend in a mountain cabin that has no electricity. Light lanterns. Most everyone's face is lovelier by lantern light.
- walk out into the winter with no coat, hat, or gloves. Better yet, do it in your bathrobe, and run, don't walk. People will think you to be most peculiar, and the peculiarer the better in this world.
- the next time you see something so magnificently and wondermously beautiful that it positively yanks your heartstrings to the very front of your chest and into your throat, scream. Give beauty her voice.

One of the best ones is to enjoy the falling bit of falling asleep. It's the best bit, until you get to the dreaming bit, which is an entirely other ballgame. Never take sleeping or dreaming for granted.

1.02.2013

juicy bits and pieces of my incredibly enviable life lately

- A sweatshirt can be incredibly tasteful in the workplace. It only needs to have quality material in it makeup (cotton/cashmere blend is easy maintenance and holds shape in the loveliest loose way you can think). Just position one atop a clean-lines black pencil skirt, add jamming glitterful earrings, subtly-coloured tights and a pointed flat or a nice nude pump. There you have it. My new go-to ensemble for the daily grind. Mixing the colors has been a blast.
- I made semi-sweet chocolate bark. There were rows of it, laden with crystallized ginger, pistachios, dried apricots, and raw almonds. The pistachio was the biggest hit, but I say the ginger was the most marvelous.
- Someone gave me an assignment at work: to find a receipt book. The giver of the assignment was the opposite of picky-choosy, so I took that responsibility upon myself. Since there was not a single one to be found from our regular office product supplier that had an acceptable font choice, I chose one with a warm herringbone print in the background. It looks like a knitted sweater. It will be the best.
- Everyone is complimenting the new desk lamp. I'm just ecstatic no one is telling me to take it down, that it's "interfering with the uniformity" of it all. Pooh, you.
- Liverpool Rummy. I've learned how to play ruthlessly, but I don't like to do it.
- Scones were to be had in abundance over these chopped-up holidays. Bucketfuls. The honeyed grapefruit ones with the Greek yogurt and oatmeal took a chunk of my thumb knuckle as a sacrifice for my trespass of bringing about their image to the tangible world again. I still think it is a small price to pay, considering their lusciousness. There is a little crater in my finger now. Fond memories of a breakfast treasure I will never cease to respect. The white cheddar, black pepper scones served well as a savory option, and you should definitely follow their advice to enjoy them with honey.
-  Els Enfarinats: Where every year, on the 28th of December, Spaniards traditionally play pranks at Ibi in Alicante, eastern Spain. A group known as the Enfarinats take over the 'civil power' in the town, and battle each other with eggs and flour. (image via the Wall Street Journal)

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