I read one and a half books this past weekend. The first was Lynda Barry’s What It Is; the one I haven’t finished yet is David Brooks’s The Road to Character.
My sister introduced me to Lynda. Amazing that I hadn’t heard about her before. She’s a cartoonist/illustrator/writer who does what I like to do: everything. She’s learned a lot about creativity by living, by creating, and by teaching, observing, and caring about her students. She knows that if a person learns how to write (or draw, or grow a garden)
We live in the high desert valley between the Sangre de Cristo Mountains to the west, and the Wet Mountains to the east. The distance between them is about 12 miles. The Sangres rise to 14, 000 feet, The Wets to about 12,000. We’re at 8,000. What that means is we live in a wind tunnel.
It’s not always windy, but this morning the wind is blowing hard. Trees are bending, and our dog, Tasha, is lying as close to me as she ever has. Her big brother Wally, a wolf-mix
Philadelphia airport is quiet today. There are plenty of people around but no noise. Odd.
I’m on my way back to my new home, which is worlds away from my original home in suburban Philadelphia. My parents are still here – healthy and well, playing tennis, climbing ladders (although if you’re reading this, ma, I hope you’ll stop RIGHT NOW!) and living in the same place I grew up in. I told a friend of mine once that my parents were coming to visit and she said you mean, you like your parents?! Her question confused me. Of course I do, I thought. Apparently she didn’t like her's so much.
The annual Woodstock Writers Festival ended yesterday. The last panel on Sunday is always Memoir a Go-Go moderated by Martha Frankel, executive producer of the festival. Martha’s a writer herself. She wrote a memoir about her gambling addiction a few years back that I liked a lot. It’s called Hats & Eyeglasses.
The memoirists on her panel included a psychic, a harem wife turned New York City mom with a rock star husband and an adopted son from Ethiopia, and a screen actress who loved and was loved by John Kennedy Jr. during college.
I woke up groggy this morning. The time change always does that to me. We went to bed at 9:30, but my body thought it was 8:30, so within 20 minutes I was back upstairs listening to music. Thankfully, the dogs woke up at what they thought was the normal time this morning, which meant I got to sleep-in a bit.
We always take a long walk first thing. Today was like most days this time of year: sunny, dry, 22 degrees. That sounds cold but it doesn’t feel cold. There’s very little moisture and the sun is so hot that I only
A friend of mine has given up self-pity for Lent. What a useful idea! It got me thinking about what I could give up that would be helpful. I’ve been obsessed with the idea of giving up for a couple of years. Brent reminds me that most people my age go through a period of assessment. We’re asking questions about whether what we’ve been doing is what we want to continue doing, or at the very least, if we want to keep doing it the same way.
When I moved to Colorado everything I’d been doing for 20 years stopped. I didn’t have a concert
Winter has finally come to Colorado. Early this morning our driveway had over a foot of new snow on it. The ploughs that cleared the street before I’d woken up, left a higher, more solid pile at the end of the driveway. I looked at it, shovel in hand, and wasn’t in the mood. I don’t mind shoveling most of the time, but those big frozen piles are daunting. My first scoop got me pretty much nowhere. There was a lot of snow and it was going to take a while. The second and third scoops were just as discouraging. I was reminded of the kitchen sink as the
Twice in the last couple of years I’ve asked very capable people to build a new website for me; a site I could manage myself after the basic architecture was in place. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a clue how difficult it was to put a site together that involved music. When my friend Martha suggested I move to HostBaby because their templates were designed for musicians, I took a look. It’s still taken me a year to have the guts to start over again.
Every so often I get an email or a card from someone who encourages me to keep writing my blog. This morning I got one of that said, “I miss your blogs.” Saturday someone else called to ask if their name had been taken off my list because they hadn’t heard from me for a while. There are lots of reasons for not writing these last few months. I don’t know about you but the speed and quantity of information we’re all dealing with shuts my circuits down pretty regularly. I still haven’t figured out how to sort my emails so that the ones I need to respond to don’t get so far down
On my walk this morning I thought of a couple of things I’d like to write about. Now that I’m at my computer I can’t remember. That’s the way things are these days.
To piece my memory back together, it’s helpful to remember what I was doing when I thought of things to write about. This morning I was walking the dogs. The mountains were covered with snow and clouds were hiding the peaks. I had my camera in one pocket and my new iPhone in the other. I thought to take a picture on the phone, so I