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Feb. 11th, 2006

boxing kitten


I never, ever, had any idea that it could be this good. Even with both of my feet on the ground. Really.




(comments disabled cause I am sucking at returning them, even as appreciated as they are.)

Jan. 1st, 2006

boxing kitten

(no subject)

Grampa is ok. He went home yesterday, and my parents said he was talking and eating and he's alight. It was a mini stroke.

I overreacted probably, but I am so emotionally overdrawn that rational is really hard to get to right now.

Dec. 31st, 2005

boxing kitten

(no subject)

What's that song where the chorus goes "I'm not ok, I'm not ok"?

I am here at home babysitting the roast, because Mom and Dad have gone to Pittsford because Grampa had a stroke sometime this morning and he's in the hospital. I have to work in an hour and so I couldn't go down with them.

In my current snively, snotty state I'm not sure what kind of a help I'll be at work today, but I am going to give it my best shot. I am. That's the putting one foot in front of the other part.

I've had a lot of practice in the last week at hiding tears. There's the bite the inside of your lip method, the turn away and hold your breath method, the oh I'll just be in the bathroom for a moment, and the yes my car really does need 15 minutes to warm up method.

Unfortunately, none of those methods, though I employed about 3 at once, worked this morning when I saw my father's red eyes, and knew that he was as worried and upset as me.

Please, I know that he has to go soon, please let it be in his sleep, at home, on his own terms. Please.

Dec. 25th, 2005

boxing kitten

Don't think twice, it's alright.

My parents are off delivering Grampa safely back to Pittsford, and I've just come back from grabbing some things from my ex-apartment. The outlook is bleak.

it was a fine day today, I got some great books, and the things I gave people will enjoy. I'm not in a place where I can feel any of the Christmas magic though. Pretty much I was glad that I could hold myself together. Yesterday I distressed my mom because I kept going upstairs to cry. She wants me to be at peace, and I don't know when that will be. Having everything out of my old apartment, and finally feeling settled in here will go a long ways towards that. I don't know how to do this any differently. Sometimes I tell myself that I'm traveling because that explains the lack of any safe space, the missing distractions that I can normally calm myself with.

Ok - you know what? There's this stuff called Rescue Remedy. It's made of essences from flowers, and there's no good scientific reason it should work but it does. There's some other stuff that's happened recently at work, and I had been having panic attacks about going to work, and it HELPED. HUGELY. There's my advertisement of the day.

I'm listening to a CD my dad made for me. It's a copy of a record that I used to listen to over and over and over and over when I was little. Since it's a record, and record players are in museums these days, I haven't heard it in a very long time. Oh - Who is it? Well, that's kind of the embarassing part - it's a recording of a Pete Seeger/Arlo Guthrie concert. I might be a hippie at heart.

I finished a book trilogy yesterday by Phillip Pullman. It's written for children but all the way through I found that hard to believe. The story follows a girl named Lyra, and Lyra has a daemon (more of a familiar). Everyone in her world does, as children the daemons can change shape, and they settle into one kind of animal as their person becomes a grownup. Lyra meets someone from what is kind of our world, and it's shocking to her that the boy Will doesn't have a daemon. It turns out, in the end, that everyone has one; it's just that in our world they're invisible inside us. Each person's daemon says something about them - like someone with a dog is likely to be a servant.

This is NOT my way of coming out as a furry. However, I have been thinking about what my daemon might take form as. A rabbit maybe.

Dec. 24th, 2005

boxing kitten

open and shut.

The scene here at the moment is this:
I'm typing on my mother's computer on the first floor. My parents, Aunt and Uncle and Grampa are behind me in the living room, shooting the breeze. To my horror, they're talking about who's having babies. I've just taken a leek tart out of the oven.

A couple of days ago, I moved back into my parents. I had a vague plan to save up money and move to Boston. Vague because he made no guarantees. He's smart like that.

On the same day I moved, Sean and I broke up. For the final, last, absolute time.

I am broken and lost to an extent I didn't know was possible. I know this won't last forever.

What I'm struck by is that so many doors have suddenly closed, and so many are suddenly open.

Jan. 23rd, 2004

boxing kitten

(no subject)

Gosh - it feels like I am way behind on a book report or something.
heh - I guess I am in a way.

So - these'll be brief but i want ot get them in before I lose motivation entirely.

For Christmas, Jason gave me a hard bound copy of all of the Hitchhiker's Guide books by Douglas Adams. There's really not a whole to say, except if you haven't read them you should. These books - at least the first few should be required reading for all humans. They're very funny. I even learned a new word: Froody. I think it means something along the lines of swank, or natty even.
I'd read most of these books before in highschool. I don't think I got the humor quite as much then, but I got all of the lessons. I'm thinking maybe that's why they didn't hit me so hard this time around.

I've also read Gatekeeper by Archer Mayer. I usually love his books, they're murder mysteries set in Vermont. [for the record we have very few murders here] It was entertaining but not nearly so much as other books of his. Perhaps it's because I couldn't relate to the locations as I usually can. It's also incredibly depressing to think of all of the hard drugs that are now coming into the state courtesy of Amtrak. Maybe he's run out of interesting murder material in a small state with very low murder rates. Regardless, it won't be first on my list of recommended Archer Mayer books.

Dec. 12th, 2003

boxing kitten

Skipping Towards Gomorrah, Diary, and Portrait of a Killer...

I got a lot of reading done while I was in Tennessee.

I have long liked Dan Savage's sex advice column, he's very funny and outspoken. In his book Skipping Towards Gomorrah his mission is to accomplish every one of the seven deadly sins. He manages all of them but one on a technicality. The book is funny while being dead serious. Were I in a debate club and had to take the side for drug legalization and gun control, I would be sure to reference it.

I splurged in the airport on the way down and bought Diary, by Chuck Palahniuk. I read his books like they are crack, or...fudge! You know, the first bite of fudge is soooooo good, but then all of your senses are overwhelmed and the next bite is not so good, but you eat the whole piece anyway. I can't slow myself down when I read his books and I know that I am not stopping long enough to smell his brilliance.
If I may, here's an excerpt:

A woman calls from Seaview to say her linen closet is missing. Last September, her house had six bedrooms, two linen closets. She's sure of it. Now she's only got one. She comes to open her beach house for the summer. She drives out with the kids and the nanny and the dog, and here they are with all their luggage, and all their towels are gone. Disappeared. Poof.
Bermuda Triangulated.

This book is dark, and I found myself a little uncomfortable while reading it, maybe that's because it's set in New England. Or, maybe I found more of myself than I wanted to in the protagonist, and not quite enough at the same time. I highly recommend it.

I'm not proud, but I also read Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper, Case Closed, by Patricia Cornwell. Vacations are good for an excuse to read salacious things. It turns out that we now know, just about definitively who Jack the Ripper was, thanks in large part to Patricia Cornwell. She's just a little full of herself, and more than once describes in great detail what modern day investigators would do at various crime scenes and that Jack the Ripper wouldn't have a chance today. I'm a sucker for books set in this era, and the parts I enjoyed the most were descriptions of the way of life then. I need to credit this book for saving me from having a tantrum when Grampa and I were dragged along to Sharon and Joe's pedal steel lesson in Stoney Stonecypher's crowded and cold basement.

Dec. 2nd, 2003

boxing kitten

As Nature Made Him

I recently finished As Nature Made Him, the boy who was raised as a girl, by John Colapinto. It the story of a boy twin who's botched circumcision led doctors to convince his parents to raise him as a girl.

I've always been interested in gender roles, maybe because my parents never went for traditional ones. My father is the nuturer and he makes better bread. My mother is stern and is the enforcer.

One of the major forces in this book is Doctor John Money. The twins presented an ideal case for him, a test case and a control all in one. His research has shaped much of how we think of gender roles. He believed that a person's gender could be altered, if done early enough in life. I remember where I was when I learned about the idea that we treat boy and girl children differently and how that supposedly had some effect on how they grow up. I was so struck with the idea, and I've been careful ever since to follow a childs lead, ask them how they feel about things and not place any of my expectations on them (some of that might have been because of Free to be you and me as well). Now we know that it has a lot more to do with hormones that babies are exposed to in the womb, but that idea has taken much longer to surface in our collective unconscious, due in large part to Dr. Money and the publicity and power that he wielded.

David's parents wanted to do the best they could for their son, and they believed in Dr. Money. But David (known as Brenda as a child) never ever felt like a girl. Brenda wasn't accepted by her classmates and had endless troubles with school. Her twin had troubles as well. But David is clear that he knows his parents loved him and he holds no ill will against them.

It was Dr. Money and his odd practices (showing the twins pornographic pictures and gaging their reactions and other horrible things) and his willingness to ignore the facts, who turns out to be the monster in this book. He had a theory and by god he stuck to it, even when proven wrong time and time again. It is based on his published reasearch that so many babies born with unclear genders had surgeries that altered their bodies to "correct" their sex.

It's a fascinating book. For me it was especially interesting to realize that even still I had wrong ideas about gender. It all turns out fairly well in the end. Brenda was finally told what had happened to her, and almost immediately started living once again as a male. He married a woman with a son whom he adopted. The family healed.

Nov. 25th, 2003

boxing kitten

slippery soapbox.

Alright dammit - this might not go along with the rules, but they're my rules.
I noticed that no one else on the live journal planet admits to knowing who Archer Mayor is. I thought this was because I'd spelled his name wrong to begin with, but now that I've corrected it, I'm still the only LJ'er listing him as an interest. He's so good - I'm just finding that hard to believe.

Mayor writes mysteries, and they are mostly set in Vermont. I read the first one when I was living in Chicago, and it turned out that part of what happened in the book took place in Chicago - in fact it took place at the one and only police station I ever went to in Chicago (the Pier One I worked at was robbed at gun point, and lo and behold, the guy was caught). After that I was hooked.

He writes about the Vermont that is rarely seen, the corners and edges of our state that perhaps we aren't so proud of. The so called cults in the Northeast Kingdom, the drug traffic in Rutland and Brattleboro, and the many people living below the poverty level. His detective is a good guy, but hard, and human in his struggles with his anger.


Nov. 24th, 2003

boxing kitten

'feels like home to me'

I've been thinking about doing this for a little while. I've been inspired by folks on my friend's list. I read a lot - a lot. I'm terrible at remembering what I've read since I'm so voracious and I thought it might be a good idea to keep better track. There's a little ego in there as well, I'd like to know just how much I've read in a year's time. Think of this as an early New Year's resolution. I'd also like to improve my writing and I thought writing about books that I've read might be a good way to start. Kinda like wee assignments.

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