Jan 25, 2015

birthday musings, is the best yet to come?

it's my birthday!  started out windy dark snowing hard.  now the sun is out. i wonder what it was like the day i was born?  i think mom told me but i've forgotten.
in the book Americanah, which i read recently and liked very much, there's a sentence about how Lagos doesn't revere old buildings as other countries (USA, GB) do, but just tears them down to build something new, and that is because Britain, USA, etc see there best as in the past, whereas Lagos sees their best as yet to come.
in terms of my birthday, something to think about.  how much am i revering the past, how much letting it go as i look forward to the future?

Mike in November

nov 27 2014

doing tonglen for mike this morning.  brought up some questions about what we want from a friend, and will we still be their friend when that is gone?  then thinking of Mike as a teacher, what do we want from a teacher ? made me think of chogyam trungpa taking off his robes...wearing a suit...he was then rejected as a teacher by both students and friends.  How did some of his followers and friends make the switch?  and when he lost use of one side of his body, how did some people continue to be his friend and student?
i thought of Mike, and what I just read about the perfect situation for a writer and scholar being prison. 
and i thought about 5 telling me how z got a new massage client who remarked it was the first time she'd had a quiet (non-talking) massage....and she keeps coming back.
mike is still our teacher if we can learn.

Jan 19, 2015

reading Writing a Woman's Life

nov 11 2014  (i keep finding these posts i never posted)

i've been re-reading and old book i saved to see if i want to continue to give it shelf space. lots of Writing a Woman's Life goes right over my head now that i am so long away from scholarly thinking and writing. the book is amazingly interesting; not as out of date as i'd hoped...the put-down term Chick Lit comes to mind...
i did come upon a phrase that reminded me of a recent discussion about a woman who had been asked to leave the opera in France because she was wearing a veil over her face.  The discussion had to do with whether France is saving women from religious oppression of womankind, or is it denying them religious freedom.  The sentence in Writing a Woman's Life is p.41/42 : 
To put it differently, as Elaine Marks does, American feminist critics see women as oppressed by sexism, "their voices unheard within the dominant culture," whereas for French critics, women are repressed, equivalent to the unconscious, and therefore not representable in language.  
 think about this difference...and if in the case of repressed, how to determine what is repression and what is personal preference!
later: almost finished Writing A Woman's Life.  it is like reading history, and making more sense of it all. it's like "Oh so that's what happened,"
one of the women in my book group is waiting to read it. she loved the mystery we are reading for the group, "Death in a Tenured Position" and wants to know more about Carolyn Heilman and her writing. 
she mentioned she is in another book group in town, of younger women (probably in their 40s and 50s as compared to ours -- we are in our late 60s and 70s) and they are reading Gone Girl.  i said i'd started it but didnt get very far and did not like it nor want to read any more of it. she was amazed and said same thing happened to her.
her theory is that it is an age thing.
in which case it is a good example of something Heilman mentions, that we take things to be personal often not realizing they are political or historical (sociological?)

Jan 11, 2015


i love this quote...  it got me through xmas this year.  so often Garrison Keillor is not at all what people think he is...  he is totally not from Mayberry. but we do all go through it together even if we are going through it by ignoring it or rejecting it.

"A lovely thing about Christmas is that it's compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together."

Jan 9, 2015

farewell to second life (for now? forever?)

little by little Second Life and First Life conspired to bring me out of the virtual world.  complications with SL's software quirks brought down TSMGO, The Show Must Go On, and i couldn't find anything as fun.  i quit working, so my scheduled changed.  the people i knew and loved dropped out of SL as their lives changed.  Osprey died.  yet i kept my land for lucy and mudpie, kept premium membership, my homes. the software changed again and changed again and mesh came in and who knows what now.  i finally this year dropped my premium status gave up my land and homes, and at my new house in First Life , out in the wilds, the internet is sooooo slow it is hardly worth peeking in now and then. so i'm cutting the cord. 

when i log in for some reason now, i am like Rip van Winkle.  everyone is a stranger, nobody from before is around.  i am wearing out of date clothing, out of date body in fact!  i've come from the past.

Remembrance of summer in the old house

i must have written this draft at our old house, when i still had a job, and it was summer!!

i think of my father when i adjust the bamboo shades on the porch. because the strings go around little cleats!  i love tying the string around the cleats and love knowing how to do it. it makes me think of my father and sailing and the cleats someone invented that you didn't have to make the knot around (boo!)
i like pulleys too, and the shades have pulleys. it's a chore adjusting all the windows and shades before i go to work. and then everything is open in the evening to let the cool in.
Vermont people who laugh in the face of 30 below 0 Farenheit get crazy when it is 90!  they never heard of drinks with ice in them, cold washcloth on the neck, wearing shorts and sandals (not black) and a hat, sitting in the shade, or god forbid, keeping the windows and curtains closed!
they want to let a little air in!  BUY AN AIR-CONDITIONER they scream!!
i can't imagine why my friend thought 85 degree weather was a good day to bake a pie, and then complained because her house was so hot, and would not believe that her rayon dress was not the coolest clothing she owns!
 mostly they wait it out. my neighbor used to take a cooler and pillow out back and sleep on his trampoline!
best place to sit out the afternoon heat is on a rock in the middle of the frigid stream.
when it's gone on being hot for more than a week, i have run out of summer recipes, and cool clothes to wear to work!
but i love it....all too soon we will have good sledding weather back!