'the adventures of a thirty-ish university graduate' or, alternately and perhaps much more aptly: 'as mad as a barking fox'

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

where the ocean meets the sky

i think, perhaps, that math is my kryptonite.

that is all.

well, that, and that today in music class we were listening to beethoven. one of the last string quartets he ever wrote brought such a vivid image to the forefront of my thoughts that i felt sure time had stopped: the strings sounded like the way high heels looked pressing into the turf around my grandfather's grave as we stood under the beating sun, praying. i could smell, taste, feel and hear every nuance of those moments like i was living them all over again.

it was terrifically bizzare.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

it's just some little thing

i spent the entire afternoon working on maths.

you know, i always kind of envied the brits that extra 's' on the end. here's a subject that crushes many souls, causes many tears, and creates vision searing rage [or maybe just on my case?] and somehow, the british isles manages to make it all so swanky sounding with a single, small, twisty, extra little letter.

anyways, all of my math work was horribly wrong and i was saved in the end once again by the brilliance of robin, who stopped working on organic chemistry to help out with the t.v. electron problem.

shortly thereafter, morgen ripped my hat from my head, i won jeopardy, anna burnt some oil and kate and i played dressup.

i need a new black shirt. and pantyhose.


Monday, January 29, 2007

so i won't hesitate no more no more

today was another day so beautiful it almost hurt to see it.

when i walk home, the wind blows off of dows lake and slowly freezes the left side of my body. tonight though, the setting sun bathed everyhing in soft warm orange light, making the cold seem a little less harsh, a little less deep. across the snow, the landscape seemed full of deep purples and blues in the dips, and oranges and pinks and soft yellows where the light hit and reflected off of the strange tufts and lumps i know make up small bushes and swells in the ground.

the houses to the east reflected the light as well- all the windows were aflame.

i should be working on science, reading hedley bull, finishing children's lit, immersing myself in hannah arendt- something.

instead, i have an orange, its segments slowly peeling apart to reval pockets of juice and sweet tastes of summer. i have soft, guitar pluck-y music. i have water colours, construction paper and a good one hundred watt lightbulb.

i can think of only one thing that would make this perfect.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

as you wonder what this moment holds in store

sometimes, at night, when i am supposed to be reading for school, i instead pull out my diary and read things from the past.

everything is in there, from grade eleven on. i'm not particularly faithful when it comes to physically writing everything down, but all of the imporant stuff is there: the teen angst, the high school drama, the fights with my friends, the days that were so good they seemed to burn themselves into me, the recollections of concerts, the move to university, my impressions of new people.

and of course [because what diary would be complete without them?], there's confessions of secret-love.

oh me.

my friends, my habits, my family

it's late, the house is empty, and snow is casting small shadows across the wall above my bed.

i wonder, can you miss something you never had?

reason says no, immediately and forcefully. but i'm disinclined to fully trust the reason that comes from my immersion in academia. this is also because my heart immediately tells me that i can miss something without having had it. maybe it's the dreaming of it, and the sudden shock upon waking that everything i've just been immersed in can't manifest here and now. maybe it's the fear, the awkwardness, the downright weirdness of it all? perhaps i crave such things without understanding why and this creates a gap which, in turn, is a space that needs to be filled.

a filled space which i miss without ever having had it?

it's late. i'm talking nonsense. i'm going to go and dream of trips to the aquarium and octopi, heat filled pavement, and strawberry pie.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

it's only an octopus, don't be upset!

i should really go outside.

i woke up to a mad dash of cleaning before coffee was ready, consisting of mopping and taping things and dishes and sweeping and then some more mopping. [there were strange bootprints all through the house in shades of black and grey]. since then i've read a bunch of historiorioriography, conversed with the funny rogers man about the eerie and scary cellar that exists below our house, punned with morgen, watched the end of the pilot for battlestar gallatica, consumed tea and cheese concurrantly and, oh a million and one other inconsequential things.

i should really go outside.

Friday, January 26, 2007

it's a goddamn arms race

i notice a few drivers eyeballing me as i walk through the end of day masses of downtown.

but then, i am bundled head to foot, hints of pink sparkles leaking through from behind my purple blue scarf, my dark coat and white white hat cutting sharp contrasts against the golden light from the setting sun refracted through a million and one green glass panes.

more noteworthy, however, is my majestic dancing.

look out world.

the good times are killing me

i try so hard to put nights like last night into words, but it never seems to work out.

know that there were old books about physics as myth and myth as physics. there was music, painting, one lone samosa, a pint and a half of steam whistle and three glasses of red wine. there was discussion about thomas jefferson, the human genome project, my catholic sex-guilt, polygamy, genius as an inherited trait and what constitutes an appropriate and useful graduation gift. there was hilarity at a distance as tory tried to make eye contact in, through, around, and over the group she was stading with.

afterwards, when the warm shroud of outside was cast off and kate and i emerged into the frozen wasteland of parking lot five, there was a smoking bus driver and a free bus-ride, kids yelling of mcdonalds, discussion of losing pants, and plans for grilled cheese.

finally, there was drunken messaging, plans made for this evening, the afore mentioned grilled cheese, modest mouse on repeat telling me that the ocean breathes salty, one slipper on and one slipper off, the elixer of saint jude and fifty pages of ender's game.

i don't know how to sum all that up, but i woke up this morning to the message that my drunken statement via msn had earned me seven hundred and fifty points.

so, yeah- it was a seven hundred and fifty point evening.

and then some.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

well that is that and this is this

when i was in second year i really quite loved my bed.

for some reason, it was just the right size and the right proportion and the right squishiness and just the right everything for sleeping and reading and watching movies and everything a bed shouldn't and should be.

tonight, however, i was also reminded of why those beds in leeds suck. they weigh a tonne, and the drawers in them are possibly the single most useless creation of mankind. or at least the one to which the least amount of thought was given.

regardless, robin now has a new room setup with which she is terribly pleased. and i- i have rekindled memories of my leeds bed, beast that it was.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

lost in coffee beans and finger paints

i just cleaned for three hours.

part of me wants to be bitter. i mean, yes, i live here and therefore i mess here. but the mess was one to which four other people contributed. and my bitterness probably stems from the fact that for the nineteenth week in a row [yes, i counted. i count things all the time. i think i have a disorder- no, seriously], that mess has been attacked, destroyed and rendered obsolete [for however small a time] by me. without help. again.

however, in presenting the mess as a formidible entity against which i, and i alone, fight each week with continued and ultimate success, i also have to come away feeling more than kick-ass.

no mess can stand up to the power of me!

[but if there were a power of three..imagine!]

in other news, today i seem to be internerd challenged. i am hopefully fixing this and having luck with attaching a file to an e-mail. we'll have to see though. sometimes when the bad internerd luck strikes, it sticks with me for some time.

Monday, January 22, 2007

hanging on one person's breath

this morning when i woke up, out house was six degrees and my shower was painfully hot simply to counteract the chill that had seeped into my bones. outside, however, was a different kind of cold. it was so sculpted, so precise and yet utterly un-pristine that it hurt to look at the shapes the bare branches pressed into the sky. small drifts of snow fell lazily from the tops of old houses in the glebe, sparkling in the persistant sunlight like [i imagine] a million diamonds.

i've been having such vivid dreams lately.

so coherent at the time, they lose every nuance of comprehensibility when i try to express them with words.

it's really rather bothersome.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

he wonders aloud why feelings so strong make the body so weak

because it's sunday, i feel like staying in.

fancy coming over? it'll be later, and all i have to offer is tea and a cold house. you'll laugh as i slowly add more blankets to the couch to keep my legs warm. of course, i'll stubbornly refuse to put on my pants, maintaining that shorts are better. the lit candles will flicker off the surface of my trunk, creating lines of light and dark like watercolour paint across a page. in the background will be new music i'm desperate to share, desparate to keep close. as time passes and the clock finally signals your time for departure, i'll lend you an extra scarf despite your objections- and when you keep it in the following weeks i'll try to keep my smile soft.

long after you've left the cold air will bite downstairs. i'll have long since returned to my bed, curled up with a novel and more tea, more than content.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

i am stretched at your head calling out to the air

today was weird.

i don't mean that in a bad way. it's just that the rhythm, the flow, the something was off kilter. it felt like i was swimming in jello, or breathing in bacta, or looking through mud, or...well.... something.

i made lemon cakes. i painted a picture that looks like tolkien. i cursed the wind as my tears froze streaming across my face. i made dinner and ate at ten. i wore leg warmers with my shorts. i got lost in folk music.

yes. weird is a good word for it.

not that it was bad. it was just weird.

Friday, January 19, 2007

and i will be your sword, and i will be your might

they sky today is painted butter yellows and sweet pinks. the sun can be seen directly, its edges unsure but definitive in the haze of snow and condensation that hangs without falling in the air.

i read somewhere that the solstice of winter, despite being the darkest day of the year, is really the embodiment of the promise of spring. it is, after all, the solstice that marks the point where the earth begins to turn back toward the sun, the hours of daylight stretching further and further.

as the butter yellows and sweet pinks drift toward strained hues of purple and blue, i'm content with the promise.

when the cold of winter comes

this week was crazy. and there's quite a bit left to do.

i have a presentation tomorrow on an article that has the most fascinating quotes in it about the necessity of narrartion in historical works as a means for access... or so i interpreted. all this played through my head while i drank three cups of tea and twirled on my chair, trying to find a comfortable way to crack my gimp knee.

i have a girls only potluck tomorrow that promises to be hilarious, and then a tea and arts and crafts get together on saturday that will produce more images of nafarious octopi, of that i'm sure.

i had dreams about eggs, music boxes and beard stubble last night.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

i want to reach out over the loch

i am not afraid of the outside.

it may be negative twenty eight degrees centigrade. small icicles may form on eyelashes. cars may spin their wheels, sliding foward without stopping at stop signs. snowbanks may block all sensible routes of travel. the wind may buffet a body from side to side. metal may be slippery enough to be comprable to ice. the sun may in fact blind you from reflecting off of a million and one surfaces rendered a cinematic white from the amounts of snow and ice that have formed.

i, however, am not afriad of this world. and, it seems, neither are about three other people who were dressed as foolishly as i and no doubt grinning from ear to ear underneath the layers of scarves anf hats and wraps.

after all, really, only crazy people enjoy weather like this.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

the sun so bright it leaves no shadows, only stars

i remember the sky.

it was summer, deep summer, and the blue of the sky had that washed out and faded aspect to it that happens when the earth is full of the sun's heat hours after the moon has come out. the grass in the yard had turned to brown weeks before, but the field off to the left still held on to green.

and god, the flowers that were there!

i remember wandering aimlessly between patches, forming a small bouquet as the smell of barbequeing meat drifted across the slight breeze that held no hope of cooling anything down. james drifted in the same field, searching out small trinkets, weird sticks and other random unmentionables.

when it came time for dinner, i found a suitable glass for the table, and plunked my bouquet in it. as james and my father and i made our way through steaks and potatos and salad, a small piece of outside joined in.

it's been one year to the day since my father passed away.

it's strange and hard, memories like this.

Monday, January 15, 2007

and may your dreams be realized

i woke up this morning to the sound of snow falling and the voice of martin luther king echoing across time, turning my skin to gooseflesh.

i can't claim to fully understand that phenomenon.

its effect, however, is unmistakable.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

the hidden law of a probable outcome

i've always felt there's soemthing slightly decadant about going back to bed simply for the purpose of reading.

my bed is currently a jumble of soft edges, rough blankets and flattened pillows. i'm sure if i dig deep enough i'll find socks, a shirt or two, a hanger, my copy of blackwood farm and a purple pen. there's also two sock monkeys and a bear in there as well, of that i'm sure.

i'm feeling disinclined to dress. all i want to do is slip back into my bed, with more books. unfortunately, i need to slip out and buy bread, do some more dishes, dust some verious surfaces, mop the kitchen floor, figure out dinner and set up my calendar for the coming year.

my dilemma seems to be between living and life.

call me and distract me. please.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

too young, yeah, you're too young

a ten o'clock dinner, candlelight dancing madly across the giant bamboo and the north walls of our house.

in the meantime, the wine glasses from the night before are slowly dripping dry in the kitchen. voices arguing about art and knowledge flow down the stairs in a heated but kindly manner, flavoured, no doubt, by a green bag of hazlenut chocolates. in my left hand is a spoon, my right a bowl of green flavoured jello.

soft sounds of traffic in the background and flickers of light as yet another emergency service vehicle roars past.

slight curves and glinting teeth seem to sum up the first truly cold day of this winter.

Monday, January 08, 2007

if there's something inside that you want to say

in the past five days i have:

cleaned my room extensively, made spaghetti sauce, spent far too much money on after-christmas christmas items, gotten two strikes and three spares intwo separate bowling games, received rides home in cars twice, travelled on a bus filled with vomit, listened to u2 waaaaaaay more than i should, eaten a large nuber ofnoodles, cursed my sorels for weighing two tonnes, dropped my keyboard no less than three or four times [which damaged the backspace key, which, if you know me, is the worst thing that could have happened], read a good chunk of chacer and, finally, hoarded my new teapot in my room.

i plan to repeat the bowling part, the chaucer part and the teapot part in the near future.

in other news, the sky this evening was so astoundingly beautiful that i had to stop and let the wind slice through me as i admired it. butter yellows and pale pinks and icy turqoises and purple-tones greys reigned supreme while the sun gleaned off of windows, making it look like everything across ottawa was in flames.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

but the blues are still blue

my room is piled high with clothes, wine glasses in their boxes, a jesus tote bag that is on the verge of being offensive [i love it] and too many books to count. downstairs it smells faintly of murphy's wood oil soap and bergamot, and the dishes, despite my best efforts, have already piled up.

it's not late but i'm ready for bed. first, though, to see if once again i'm psychic [because really, if you go back and check last year's "resolutions" you'll see that i was more than spot on]:

this year, i promise to laugh and cry. and even in public. i promise to watch my words and to attempt clarity, even when the words aren't what i want to say. or what you want to hear. i promise i won't hurt anyone intentionally. i promise you that someone will live, someone will walk, someone will travel and someone will acquire a new living space. i promise that i will love openly, and secretly, and in passing, and also in complete sincerity. i promise you that i will continue to experiment with combining merlot and whiskey, even though i know that it only means danger. i promise less drama and more drama that you can handle. i will continue to try singing and dancing in public, even though i'm aware that neither action can be labelled as a personal strength. i promise a dramatic haircut. but mostly, just as before, i promise to try to be me, as much as i can.

welcome to the flip side.