Monday, October 27, 2008

Fall knitting

I just started a new project last week after finishing one project that took forever.

The never ending cardi (actually showing off my new halloween hat... cowgirl btw.)

A Back-to-school sweater vest to make my blue eye bluer.

I spent hours Lee Phoenix Stitch & Bitch on Sat'y and got pretty far.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Funniest 7 minutes I've seen in a looooong time.

Best take-aways...
"I broke my ankle when I tripped and fell on Milton Berle's cock."
"Your mouth is ruining all the hard work your ass is doing."
"Someone punch me in the face so I can see some stars."


Great article in the Times today about clothing classics.

In between my lust for feathered shoes and shiny things, I have a passion for practical gear: my wellies, my Bean barn jacket and my duck boots.

In times of trouble, solid and hardy wins the the day.

(There may be hope for me, yet!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Start a revolution!

Ok kids, we're going to turn this city around.

It won't be easy.

There's alot of baggage, dead weight and pessimists who tell you it can't be done.
But it can be done and it's up to us to do it.

Yoke up my friends, we have work to do.

A week ago I sent out an invitation to specific group in a specific sector to come see a rehearsal - free.

We reached out because we all want the same thing for the city. Life, vibrancy, things to do, people to see and the energy that's created from shared experiences.

I got, like, 2 replies.


So I reached out to the person who gave me the list and said "Help!"

First, a blog post...
Then, a Twitter...
Then, an email to a far larger group.

Today... today my brothers and sisters, I waded through over 100 emails, I fielded 20+ calls.

All because of personal contact from 1 (ONE) well-connected person.

It's time for each of us to look at our rolodexes, reconnect and advocate for the good that's happening all around us.

Are you a fan of modern art? Make your friends go to SPACES next weekend.
Like traditional theater? Organize an outing to the Playhouse.
Opera? Come see Hansel & Gretel at the State Theater.

If we don't start sharing what we love with our personal networks those things are going to GO AWAY.

Thanks to one person opening their rolodex, I now have 110 people coming to an event I thought would yield 25... if I was lucky.

And of those 110, I guess 75 will show, 25 will love it, and 10 will become supporters.

Those other 100... well, they got a personal email, or time on the phone, and they now know of one more fun and fabulous thing happening in Cleveland... and that's enough for me.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Chocolate Caramel Apples and Pears

Title sort of speaks for itself.

Free Hugs on Coventry

Today we went to the Inn on Coventry after UU services.

Outside the restaurant were two people with "Free Hugs" signs.

A while back, someone directed me to a video that showed Juan Mann in 2006.

There wasn't quite the crowd, but as in the video, once one or two people did it, more people took part.

I don't know if they're still out there, but go ahead and get a free hug from whomever is closest right now.

I mean, come one, they're FREE.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Retail therapy, an observation and a shopping mitzvah

Retail Therapy
After spending the morning helping my dad winterize their front porch and an afternoon with my friend and her baby, I thought I would do a little shopping.

I've had little time to myself lately, and I didn't realize how much miss being solitary in a crowd. Of course it's fun to shop with friends, but sometimes I like being out there alone - no one to tell me I'm moving too fast or too slow. I'm enough of an extrovert that I can (and do) ask those around me for a second opinion re: fit or color... people love to share their opinions, all you have to do is ask.

An afternoon like to today is less about acquiring goods and more about getting reacquainted with myself - my changing body, my changing style, my changing outlook on life and how my external appearance signals those things to the world.

So therapy in a sense that I got the spend the day with me - and that's good.

Another change I've noticed since being on the Adderall is that I'm less likely to buy just to buy. In general, it's curbed my need to consume for consumption's sake - I'm less compulsive and more thoughtful about what I let come into contact with my person.

An Observation
As a professional, I'm trying to curate a style for myself: quirky, classic, flattering... Can I say, I'm not entirely sure if I love or hate the last 5 years of ruffles. I find them endearing and charming in concept, but 50% of the time, they come off as cloying and precious.

I tried on about 30 things at Banana Republic and - my god - the puffed sleeves and the pleats and ruffles were EVERYWHERE. I tried them, just to see. I even think a few worked. But for the most part, I felt as though I had stumbled into a 1930s maternity clothing shop. I remember being in Anthropologie 4 years ago and making a half-hearted joke about the great ruffle war of aught four. Come on - seriously?

But I get it. I see ruffles and I think "oooo - charming..." *sigh*

J. Crew - same damn thing - are they infantilizing women with this?
Is smocking next?

A shopping mitzvah
Ok, so "mitzvah" might be too strong a word for what happened, but I love it when people reach out for no good reason other than to be nice.

BR has a partnership with Goodwill where you bring in a used sweater in good condition and get 30% off a full priced items.

Tangent: LOVE these kinds of partnerships. Love them. They're helpful- they're real - they're creative. There's no "What percentage of your profits are actually going to the nonprofit?" question. You give away the sweater you were going to give away anyway, you get an immediate and measurable result and you suddenly feel that psychic glow around your experience with the corporation that you will remember - meaning you will probably come back.

Anyway, I had no idea this was going on, the trip was unplanned and on my way home. So I got in line and was chatting with the sales guy and he's telling me to come back before the 26th... and the woman behind me taps me on the shoulder and says "You forgot your sweater? Here, I brought an extra..." And then WE start chatting about the whole nonprofit/corporate partnership thing which is exciting and energetic AND I walked away having saved $75.

I'm doing alot for family and work these days, and sometimes I wonder if my efforts are being noticed by the universe-at-large. I don't do it to get something back, but it's nice to feel rewarded.

Today, I got exactly what I needed.

Sure, it was just 30% off some clothes, but it was an unnecessary kindness that put me in a good mood for the rest of the day.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Low-key night

I stayed in tonight and it was glorious.
No bags to pack, no road to hit, no reservation to meet.

I wandered over to Pinky's Day Planner and left there thinking I may commission her make a jacket I coveted so many years ago.

I saw that Asterisk Gallery was open and stopped in to see 103 and Counting. Great work as always - I walked away wanting one of Sally Matia's pieces and loving that we have so much talent here.

I finished up with a sundae from Scoops to reward myself for all the gym workouts, and sat on my backporch enjoying the fallness of fall.

Later, I scanned and organized pictures, each one reminding me how much life I've led and how much more I've yet to do.

Flying in planes...

Playing on beaches... (On season and off)

Being cute... (Hello - can you believe I hated how I looked when I was 22?)

Racing with the motliest of motley crews...

Attending historic tree-plantings... (Newton's Apple Tree @ Case)

Conserving mosaics and paintings 60' up on scaffolding... (Despite a debilitating fear of heights)


I'm pretty awesome.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Autumnal weekend II

There's not much to say about the secluded beach down the road from my great-grandmother's house.

It's simply... divine.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Autumnal weekend

I spent the wonderfully warm weekend in Berlin Heights and Huron, where my family's from.

On Saturday, we went to my great-uncle's, built on the land adjacent to my great grandmother's house and surrounded by a wonderful collection of fruit trees: plum, peach and apples. She always had a little of everything growing and spent summer and fall canning for winter.

At one point, I wanted to buy the house and rent a pied de terre in Cleveland so I could spend summers there gardening and swimming, with a city place to hang my hat as well.

Here are a few highlights from the weekend spent with family.

A laden Jonagold

Nana and I try a self-portrait

A peck of Grimes Golden apples and Golden Delicious

Seckel pears

Sorry about the focus...

We had an early Thanksgiving on Sunday - My Grandmother the Snowbird flies south for the winter and my cousin leaves for Quantico in 2 weeks.

We were short a centerpiece so I grabbed the berry basket my father made years earlier and filled it with things from her garden: watermelons, apples, grapes, peppers, tomatoes and chestnuts.

It was a traditional, if not short, Thanksgiving - with all the trimmings.
And missing the threat of snow.

A poem

I saw this poem referenced in an essay - I found it and I thought it was wonderful.
Because sometimes, all that is needed is for someone to chop the wood and carry the water.

To Be of Use
The people I love the best
jump into work head first
without dallying in the shallows
and swim off with sure strokes almost out of sight.
They seem to become natives of that element,
the black sleek heads of seals
bouncing like half-submerged balls.

I love people who harness themselves, an ox to a heavy cart,
who pull like water buffalo, with massive patience,
who strain in the mud and the muck to move things forward,
who do what has to be done, again and again.

I want to be with people who submerge
in the task, who go into the fields to harvest
and work in a row and pass the bags along,
who are not parlor generals and field deserters
but move in a common rhythm
when the food must come in or the fire be put out.

The work of the world is common as mud.
Botched, it smears the hands, crumbles to dust.
But the thing worth doing well done
has a shape that satisfies, clean and evident.
Greek amphoras for wine or oil,
Hopi vases that held corn, are put in museums
but you know they were made to be used.
The pitcher cries for water to carry
and a person for work that is real.

Marge Piercy

Friday, October 10, 2008

Nerd sex rocks

Courtesy of XKCD

(Wed'y's was pretty awesome, too)

Friday, October 3, 2008

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Quirky college kids attend a wedding - Denison 1996

Among the photos I found, these are a favorite.

(l-r) Me, Angie, Cathy, Julie, Mark and Derek is in the cape.

I remember buying my dress to be in the wedding, leaving the tags on and returning it the next day.

I cannot express the ways with which I love this picture.

Facebook frenzy

So a friend finally got me on Facebook - pictures, comments and all.

I've been on less than a week and found people who represent most every chapter of my life.
From youth theater to each of the different states I Iived in to current friends from the UU, I am amazed to see how many people reached out to find me.

I thought it wasn't going to be something I would care to spend time on, but catching up with people you experienced things with is always interesting.

Tonight, I'm digging out pictures from college and summer stock to scan and post and thinking of all the people who meant so much to me, if only for a short time, so long ago.