Monday, August 24, 2009

Great day.

You would think that a day that included cat barf, cat pee, and ants would not be a great day, but you would be wrong. The main thing that made this day great was the 1.5 mile round-trip walk to the pool and back with Bean, and the way that the trees, especially the occasional birch trees, which always take my breath away, looked against the perfect summer afternoon sky. We had such a fun time that he hardly complained at all about being made to walk rather than ride in the car, and he didn't mind when I got cold and sat in the sun while he continued to splash and swim and play.

I can't emphasize enough what that walk did for me. It was a great lifting of spirits, which had not been low to begin with, but it was one of those moments when the natural world and the sense of the presence of a benign spirit connect with you so that you feel pure joy. It's hours later and I'm still ridin' that high.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Working my way through other people's problems.

I came to two realizations today. Well, ok, one realization, because the first one is pretty obvious and I figured it out a while ago:

1) Don't post all your shit on Facebook. I am continually astounded by what my Facebook Friends are up to. People who are job hunting or will be, soon, post on Facebook about their annoying students. In detail. Others forward bits of private emails and also email messages from listserves. Why would anyone visit this trouble on themselves? Don't they realize that their future employers will not be impressed?

2) I recently spent time with a friend, and being with him made me feel very stressed out. I couldn't figure out why, because I had felt pretty great beforehand, but while I was with him, I was getting increasingly edgy and upset. I finally figured out that it was simply because *he* was so incredibly anxious and stressed - but in a low-key way, so that I didn't realize it at the time - that he was triggering all of my own anxiety. Once I realized this, I was able to let go of the accumulated stress and find my way back to my happy place. (No, I'm not a horrible person - he is just someone who carries around a lot of anxiety.)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


We are now almost entirely moved into our new home. All that is left in the apartment seems to be cleaning supplies, a chair that is headed for the landfill, the pictures on the walls, and a few random items. Probably one or two carloads, altogether, if I include the stuff still in Mr. P's closet. Not too bad.

Meanwhile, the new place is cozy and comfortable and I really like it. But, as some of you know, I have a bit of a bug phobia, and our basement has a lot of spiders in it (little ones, at least). I even went to therapy a few years ago specifically to work on my arachnophobia, and I learned that it is an anxiety disorder and that using relaxation really helps (it does - I am in a much better, happier place than I was when I first went for treatment).

So I'm a teensy bit on alert here, but still quite comfortable.


This morning I found six legs in the bathtub. They were not attached to anything. I don't know who they belonged to. Two were big and four were small. I really don't even like to speculate about this, and I don't feel much like using the tub. I imagine that there may have been an epic battle in the tub involving one or both of the cats, but again, really, it's probably best not to speculate.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Whole Foods boycott still misses the point

You have probably heard about this already. Just for the record, I shop at Whole Foods all the time. On the one hand, I wish the boycott a lot of luck, and I hope that jerk, John Mackey, loses money (it's not lost on me that telling people to take responsibility for themselves and eat right conveniently puts money into his pocket, since eating right would mean eating organic, non-genetically modified, "whole foods", wouldn't it?).

But the larger problem here is that as long as we see food as a matter of individual choices rather than community responsibility, most people are not going to get the healthy foods they need. I had the chance to meet Winona LaDuke a while back, shortly after my breast cancer was diagnosed. (She said, "I bet you're eating organic *now*, huh?" And I was/am.) But I asked her, "How do we do this organic thing in the city, when buying organic means shopping at exclusive and expensive stores that are out of reach of most folks?" And she said: backyard vegetable gardens. But it became clear to me, after thinking about this, and about the time and space and knowledge needed to garden, and about the need for shared greenhouses, that this is really a community endeavor. We can't simply garden for ourselves any more than we can simply buy produce for our own families at Whole Foods. We need to find ways, as neighborhoods, to make healthy food available to everyone.

So, to get back to my hands - on the other hand, boycotting Whole Foods is really not as effective as is working toward other, community-supported, long-range solutions. It might make a difference re. health care, which is, of course, the sole purpose behind the boycott, but it doesn't solve these larger problems. Also, Trader Joe's does not have a great record re. unions, at least in MN (they were recommended as a place to shop during the boycott). Local co-ops may be the place to go, but they are financially out of reach for most people.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I shoulda gone to art school...

...or at least taken a class in color and/or painting. I'm trying to manage a couple of small painting projects before we move, and it feels a lot like trying to make up a song, like my brain isn't big or strong enough to manage the different colors/sounds all at once, especially when the paint swatches/notes are so very close in color/tone. Right now I've got this bright purpl-y thing going that was supposed to be much darker and with more brown in it. Maybe another coat or two...

And IKEA continues to confound me with it's impossible instructions. I consider myself to be fairly smart, and I decipher a number of these to put furniture pieces together. This hinge business, though, is a whole nother thing.

And, we're moving. So I'm off to grab a few more random things off bookcases and dressers, out of cupboards and closets. See you later.

Friday, August 07, 2009

So, What Is Feminist Mothering?

My new post on Feministe.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

I'm at Feministe this week.

Stop by, and stay tuned for more posts...