Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Halloween (tomorrow) -- to one and all....

I sure do love Halloween, the kids all decked out and trick-or-treating....passing out candy to them....eating some candy myself....watching scary movies and smelling crisp (or wet) autumn leaves, not to mention those caught whiffs of fires burning in fireplaces or in bonfire pits in the backyard. I'm a happy camper.

Had my usual pre-Halloween horror movie fest this past weekend. Things kicked off with Christina coming over Friday night (with Mom, Ben, Ollie, and myself) for some Simpsons Clue and some Michael Jackson dancin'. Friday bled into Saturday, mimosas and delicious breakfasts at Francis's, followed by some great movie watching (Poltergeist, Exorcist, Hellraiser). It was lovely to cozy up with all my friends and family amongst the heaps of blankets and pillows and bean bags. So good to be warm inside that home that Mom has decorated so creepy and cute at the same time. And nothing tops off a good weekend more than a Sunday breakfast and awesome talk with Tara, She of the Wisdom.

It's been an interesting couple of weeks. I helped Karla and Steven get their new iguana home safe and sound, and the couple who rescued him also rescued this baby doll from the roof of their apartment building. Julio has been a bit, um, damaged, but he now has character: a drawn in mustache; ripped out hair; snake and web and dagger tattoos; a big "FUCK ME!" written on the back of his head; "THUG LIFE" written on his eight fisted knuckles. No worries, Julio. You now have a good home at the Buck Motor Inn, where all the Misfits are loved and appreciated and respected.

Still feeling lots of ups and downs with my emotions (and experiencing plenty of weird dreams in the process), but I also am feeling more centered, relaxed, something. Hard to put a finger on. I'm letting some things go.

Been really enjoying my time with Mom....seeing all the amazing work she's doing on the San Raphael house....and I'm just loving Ollie more and more everyday, that little goofball. It seems to be the details that are the best parts of life sometimes: catching Ben with a beautiful expression, rolling over to see his cat Missy sleeping next to me, hearing a needed song, seeing two young children help their mother rake leaves in their yard. My heart aches and breaks and heals and rejoices all at the same time sometimes.

I sure am blessed to have such a great community. This weekend was just the perfect example of that -- my annual extravaganza was, simply, excellent.

Friday, October 19, 2007

My Entire Life is a Vampire Story

Twin Peaks -- Yes, get yours now....

Finally, TP is out on DVD -- all of it....the pilot, season 1, season 2, tons of extras....Fire Walk with Me (the prequel) is rumored to be getting a special two-disc edition release, as well....Keep your fingers crossed.

Get your box set now:

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Winter Kites

I woke up from the most strange dream this weekend. Here's what happened: I walk into a haunted house, and I'm told that my room is at the end of the hall, the one that looks like a funeral parlor. Bookshelves are built into the wall, and I see ghosts flitting in my peripheral vision. There's a sense of dread in the room. I feel suffocated. Suddenly the room opens out into a field, and I walk into tall grass that sways against me. A huge, ancient tree sits alone in the field; it's a late spring or early summer day; the breeze feels just perfect. There are hundreds and hundreds of kites in the tree, wrapped around all the branches, tangled at the lines, caught in the wind. They shimmer back and forth gracefully, with a touch of melancholy. I walk up under the kites and stare right at them. They turn into balloons, hundreds of different colored balloons that are no longer caught in the tree but are still pressed together, embracing. Somehow, I'm floating up, I'm getting closer to the balloons. I'm rising gently, softly, and I welcome it. Right when I get near the balloons I wake up.

In my mind and heart and spirit, I tie this in to a true story a friend of mine told me about the birth of her first son: ~~~~

She and her husband were on the way to the hospital in the middle of a horrible winter storm. They'd already starting having troubles in their relationship, but the troubles were buried deep enough that they hadn't begun to crack the surface in totally visible ways. They arrived at the hospital, and--instead of helping his wife--the husband hurried toward the hospital's doors, to get in from the cold. His wife was left in the car by herself, and she opened the door, and then stood there looking at her husband. He seemed so far away. She'd have to carry her luggage by herself. She took that extra second to feel the life inside her, to feel winter on her face, and he seemed even farther away. He told her to hurry up, it's freezing out here, we have to get inside where it's warm. So she grabbed her luggage and followed behind him in the snow, and stepped inside where it felt safe and warm and free.

Lately, my friend and her son have been letting this kite go, little bit of string by little bit of string.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

How Kick-Ass is Annie Lennox?

I listened to Annie's album for the first time this morning while writing. First impression? Amazing. So many songs are throaty and strong and political. And it can't hurt that "Sing" has backup from The Generics, Beth Orton, Bonnie Raitt, Dido, k.d. lang, KT Tunstall, Madonna, Martha Wainwright, Melissa Etheridge, Sarah McLachlan, and many more. In many ways, Annie Lennox has said she made this help to help fight the war against HIV/AIDS and to bring attention to the fact that "the pandemic of HIV/AIDS in Africa [is], in fact, a genocide."

Want to know how you can help contribute in the fight against HIV/AIDS? Go to: annielennoxsing.com


Monday, October 08, 2007

choirgirl coolness

Check out this artwork inspired by a fan of Tori's work. Here's the link....read the cool lil' explanation and then click on "home" at the bottom. This will take you to the song titles, which you can then click on for the artwork:


Boys Cry

I've cried twice in the past week. I mention this because it's been a touch unusual for me to cry lately (and it's unusual for me to write that; I've always been such a natural at it!). Last week a lot of things in my life came to a head. Teaching at AIPD began; got going again--in full-force--on my writing; dealing with home life issues. I felt a touch overwhelmed, and when I missed a phone call from Aaron, who'd phoned me from Glasgow, I just lost it in my office at work and started crying in front of R. Thing is -- it felt REALLY good to let it all out of my system. Plus, Aaron tried me back just a couple hours later and we were able to connect. The second Tear Time was this past Saturday. Mom was flipping channels and landed on Fly Away Home, a film inspired by true events about a young girl and her father who help a flock of geese migrate by leading them with airplanes. The first time I saw this film was right around 9/11 and my breakup with J. That breathtaking song by Mary Chapin Carpenter--"10,000 Miles"--just gets my heartstrings every time, and Mom looked at me lovingly and said how silly I was being:)

For a while now I've been pushing some things back--hopes, fears, questions--and while letting them in is scary, it's also necessary for change. So these touches of tears, this melancholy, is far outweighed by what it represents. The last year has been just a whirlwind for me (though I tend to think every year is a whirlwind). I look forward to some Non-Whirlwind Status. I just have to learn to breathe better.

Vancouver, B.C. was just as lovely as always. I loved the Granville Island market, and I was especially fond of the hat shop (hello, Mr. Monkey knitted cap) and the kids' stores where I met Hannie, my hand-puppet owl, who now is hangin' out at the Buck Motor Inn. I had so much fun with Ben, Scott, and Nick....and it feels as equally wonderful to be back in Portland, settling into an autumn routine. Writing, teaching, working....lots going on. But isn't it funny how when we have less time we often get more done? I feel focused (and less OCD-centered) because of my increased responsibilities.

Little things & moments, as always, are what stand out to me: the streetlights and wet cobblestone streets in a historic district of Vancouver; the two puppy dogs I saw last week, homeless and timid, searching for love and breaking my heart; Mom curled on the couch with Ollie at her feet, the Halloween lights strung up, the candle burning and coating the air with its almost cranberry scent; Ben curled in bed, a pillow smushed against his face; my new Green Man postcard; feeling happiness for K and S, their new home, sad for them for their recent loss, thankful I got to remind them about the Feast Day of Saint Francis; seeing Christina at Snow's office, and hugging her and breathing in that awesome hair gel she uses; walking around Aurora while Mom was in the antique store, drinking my coffee and eating banana bread and talking with strangers, then grabbing a super-yummy lunch with Mom at the Colony Pub, later returning to our cozy, comfy home and our pajamas; just thinking about all the wonderful people in my life, just exploding with gratitude for them. So much more.

I am scared and excited and hopeful and apprehensive and curious. I'm letting all these things swirl around me like clashing canvases; I think I'm ready for it.

p.s. I'm really loving the new CD I made for B. It's rockin' and one of my best efforts to date!

Friday, October 05, 2007

HGFE (or, Hot Guys Fighting Evil -- known to some as "Supernatural")