My Fresh Hell
Life in Scribbletown.

Brought to You By The Letter L


As we were driving through the city, after The Nutcracker performance, we passed Dusty’s Beloved Preschool, which has been turned back into a residence. Dusty said, “I remember this block! This is my memory block!”

Then we passed a man who – just looking at his face alone – had been ridden hard and put up wet. The man could have been no more than 45 or 50 years old but his craggy and pock-marked face looked twenty years older. He shuffled down the street, walking something off, with a cowboy hat on his head. My husband said,

“Gee, it was a tough day at the rodeo.”

I replied, “Skid rodeo, maybe.”


A meme from emphatic-tns (who’s now at LiveJournal):

Anyone who wants to play, send a note or email me and I’ll send you a letter of the alphabet. You have to come up with ten things you love that start with that letter. I got the letter “L” and frankly, this was harder than I thought. Maybe because my brain is not working the way it should. Here’s what I came up with:

Leisure Time – I’ve heard really good things about this but have never experienced it personally. Maybe I should send Santa a last-minute email. Cause I think this is what I really need for Christmas.

Libraries – Thank you, Andrew Carnegie! You might have been a Capitalist Pig but you put your money in the right place. Too bad my hometown was too stubborn to accept your generosity! We had to wait for Maj. Lewis Ginter to cough up funds for our library system. Really, there’s nothing better than a library. Free books for all! A warm, dry place to sit and read and dream. A treasure trove of secrets hidden in the stacks and in the rolls of microfilm down below! One of the reasons I’ve chosen a career working in higher education is the library available to me. At this moment, I’m two blocks away from two libraries – the college’s and the town’s. It doesn’t get much better than that!

Laughter – Imagine a world without humor? Without jokes? Without happiness? Pass the cyanide, please.

Larry David – Speaking of humor, this is one of my favorite comedians. Could there be anything funnier (and sadder) than Curb Your Enthusiasm? I, too, am this misunderstood. Things come out of our mouths that just…get misinterpreted, change meaning in mid air, or just plain get mangled in translation. Not everyone’s cup of tea, I understand. Larry is an acquired taste. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Lunch Hour – My one chance in the day to either read or work on my novel (in the library, naturally). Sadly, I usually end up spending it running errands. Somehow or other, I need to fix this so that I’m writing more and running around less. If only to save gas.

Land – One of the reasons I moved to the country was to have some space, not to mention peace and effing quiet! I don’t own a lot of land – just 4.5 acres – but it’s enough to do what I like to do: gardening. I particularly like the rural laissez faire attitude about property. There are no Lawn Police telling me to pick my shit up out of my yard or to mow my grass or to fix up my unsightly shed. Nor do I care if others have the skeletons of every vehicle they ever owned in their yard. Not my damn business. Live and let live, I say! The fact that my barn roof has a gaping hole in it is my affair, especially since we keep no livestock inside.

Literature – It will come as no surprise to those of you who know me, that I am a book nerd. I love to read. I have been keeping a “books read” list for every year since 1989. How’s that for utter dorkiness? Hard to beat, isn’t it? In 2004, I read 60 books (maybe 62 – I am too lazy to go back and find out right now). Last year, I read only 46. Right now I’m hovering at 45 and it’s worrying me. I want to AT LEAST match last year’s number, if not surpass it. But, with two weeks left in the year, it’s not looking good. I’m sure you can feel my special English Major pain, can’t you? A few of my current favorite authors include: Donald Westlake, Dorothy Sayers, Mark Twain, John Steinbeck, Carson McCullers, Flannery O’Conner, Edward P. Jones, Astrid Lindgren, Beverly Cleary, Roald Dahl, Ruth Rendell, Laurie Colwin. Plus a hundred others.

Letters – I love to receive mail. Any kind of letter – paper or e-mail. I like correspondence. My best friend and I (we were born in the same hospital on the same day, twelve hours apart) haven’t lived in the same state since we were three and yet we still keep in touch. She’s in Oregon now. We both have two daughters. We’re both in relationships with artistic and occasionally difficult people. We are the ones who keep things humming. I haven’t seen her in the flesh in maybe ten years. But, we still write to each other.

Leaves – On trees, on plants, on flowers. Really, the world doesn’t seem whole without leaves on the trees. Right around mid-May, the world is as it should be. Right now, the trees are simply spooky skeletons exposing all the formerly hidden birds’ nests. The only good thing about January is that it’s garden planning time. I’m stockpiling seed catalogs already. I’m plotting and scheming ways to keep the critters out of my vegetable beds. My head is filled with plans – this year the tomatoes will go here; this year I’ll try this variety of pepper. Can’t wait to get my hands dirty again.

Light – Incandescent, candle, sun...doesn’t matter. I like the warm sun on my face. I only feel truly well and whole when I’m warmed by the sun, like a cat. I like reading in a darkened room with just a table lamp illuminating the page. I like Christmas lights on trees and houses and in yards at night. I like to sit in front of the fireplace and watch the flames dance. I like to sit in the dark living room on Christmas Eve with just the tree lit up and everyone else asleep. Sometimes I think I hear...sleigh bells?....could that be right? Better close my eyes and go to sleep so magic can happen. Or maybe it has already.


10:33 a.m. ::
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