Thursday, November 30, 2006

I dare you to name me a good jazz flutist who isn't really a saxaphone player

It's me and Lester against the world.

However, the only real justification for this feeling I have is that dinner this evening was tasty, but monochromatic.

Work is bearable--far better than it's ever been--but still too much and overwhelming and draining. I resent it.

One more week of the semester to go. Then I can be glad the work is finished and get right down to being sad that I'm not teaching in the spring.

I also realized that I'm slightly nervous--mostly in a good way--about my trip to Oman. I've been having weird desert dreams. In going to Oman, I'm worried that I'm only traveling from one suburban, isolated place to another.

I haven't been in an expatriate compound in several years. I wonder if I'll feel alienated in the same way or in a different way.

March 9, 1979 Denver Post

While editing and grading papers at the Yoga Center today, I scanned oodles of pictures in an overdue and rushed attempt to make copies of baby and childhood photos for my Dad before I head to Oman. I worked on photos and images from my first scrapbook today--a careful, amazing scrapbook mom made for me for my 6th birthday.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

I have decided

that Mark and I have decided to move into a restored cave house in central Turkey and live lives of contemplation and so on. Or else we will move to a large villa on the Aegean and you can all come over and go swimming.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

I stayed above a KFC


I scanned some pictures today, mostly for my Dad. His birthday is New Year's Day, and I'm trying to make copies of baby pictures as well as stuff from high school and college. The pictures from Singapore and Malaysia make me long for, well, being on vacation and not worrying about school, jobs, family, or money. Being happy and relaxed is healthy, clearly.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Q: What songs does Lester Sing?


A: "Lester Peeps Out," and more recently, "Lester Sleeps In."

Ra Ra Ra The Corcoran College of Art + Design

-Dare to be brave-
Come out and see them
Free @ 7 p.m.Wednesday Nov. 29th
Transformer Gallery
1404 P. Street, NW

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Listening to the Psychedelic Furs Talk Talk Talk, "No Tears," etc. Love that song.

We don't talk about the rain in San Diego enough. It rains here, people. It rains. We tried to go to the mountains but couldn't because it was raining.

~

I'm not into obscure words as titles.

I've done it myself. I have a poem called "A Ukase." But the poem explains the word, and I'd never title a book "A Ukase."

I'm not into French words as titles. Maybe if you as author have some connection to the French language beyond having read some French theory, but even then I think it's dubious.

Just watched "Kiss me Deadly." The government seems to think that information isn't relevant to context and vice versa. So things blow up.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Went to yoga this morning--I've felt like a noodle all week. This happens every so often. I become just strong enough to start pushing it a bit more, and then I do and get sore. This week it's my back and shoulders. Yesterday, my teacher said something about how open my upper back and shoulders are. Huh? When did that happen? I thought my shoulders were hunched up around my ears.

Mark and I are headed to a friend's house to celebrate today. I did most of my cooking yesterday evening: a pear pie, a cassoulet w/butternut squash, pancetta, roasted garlic, and some other things--it's cooking now & smells good, and then some cornbread that splits the difference between dryer, intense corn tasting southern cornbread and sweet, cake-like northern cornbread.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

I got books in the mail to review. I will review them. But it is Thanksgiving week, so I am thinking about cooking and food, not poetry.

Actually, I am thinking about poetry, just not blogging about it.

I wore my koala apron from Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary to cook dinner this evening. Who knew that broccoli stalks could taste so good. They can actually be caramelized if sliced thin and sauted in olive oil. It's all very exciting. No more buying broccoli caps for me.

I am planning to cook many things this weekend, but I don't know what to cook when. For whom.

I'd really like to attempt making Pommes Anna again. It always tastes fabulous. Pommes Anna is basically a big "cake" make out of layered potato slices and lots of butter that's very crisp on the outside but meltingly tender inside. (Obviously, it's not really a good idea to eat this dish very often given all the butter in it and never never use russet potatoes because they are too mushy).

However, whenever I make it, some potatoes always stick to the bottom cast iron pan. Given that part of the point of this dish is how fabulous it looks, I find this rather distressing. Parchment paper on the bottom, maybe?

Monday, November 20, 2006

After seeing lots of "adopt a bunny" signs as well actual bunnies at the vet on Saturday, I did some research about rabbits as pets. I'm a big fan of rabbits (I admit that last month I bought three Peter Rabbit china mugs, kind of like the old ones I had when I was little) but I'd never though of them as making good pets. After doing some research, though, it's clear that I just didn't understand rabbit social patterns.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Lester survived the trip to the vet / In the mail / what to bake for Thanksgiving

He weights 28 grams, which makes him huge for his breed. The staff kept calling him a "big boy," which is true, but also ridiculous, because compared to the macaws hanging out in the waiting room he was, of course, very small. I like the vet quite a bit--he knows the vet out in Fairfax who treated Lester when he was sick last fall, and he also keeps parrotletes at home, so he respects Lester and his kind, even though parrotletes aren't big and showy. At any rate, I feel relaxed about having him board at this place while Mark and I are gone over the holidays.

I got several things in the mail from Dusie, including Tom Orange's chapbook. At first glance I thought, "wow, lyric!"

Mark and I are celebrating Thanksgiving with some friends. I'm probably going to bring a dessert. Something involving pears. A pear upside down cake. Pear pie. Pear tarte.

Also. Note the compelling life stories of the pandas at the San Diego zoo.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Taking Lester to the vet this morning in San Diego. He likes being in the car, but not at the vet. No one likes being in hospitals, so this isn't surprising.

I've noticed that avian medicine is very open to alternative medicine in general--when Lester was sick last fall, Dr. Masood prescribed him a short course of antibiotics, but also echinacea, apple cider vinegar and basically just lots of food, warmth, and bed rest.

Lester's not sick, just going in for a yearly check up, and to make sure he's healthy before we board him in December.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Met with six students today. I'm glad they seem to be excited and interested in their final projects.

Wrote article about alternatives to Christmas trees--ones that don't involve chopping down trees. I like evergreen potted vines. Depending on what kind of trellis you build, you can have them grow into traditional Christmas tree pyramid shape, or something else.

Got a copy of Steph Rioux' low button magic V. I think I'll write something about it later.

Jerome Rothenberg is reading this evening at CSUSM.

My dad's laptop arrived today. I will lug it through no less than 5 airports to Oman in December.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Monday, November 13, 2006

When you were 8

what did you love?

I loved My Little Pony. But I don't want to get them plastic toys (Ok, I already picked up a bunch of Hello Kitty stuff for Sarah--but Hello Kitty is timeless!)

I've got a list of possible gift ideas for my sisters from Dad & Mary, but I'd still like to brainstorm more. And it's got to fit easily in my luggage. Books, music, videos are all obvious choices.

Help. More ideas?
I typed up more poems and a rather odd piece of prose.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

We watched "Cotton Comes to Harlem" on Saturday night--the first time I'd ever seen it. (Note: I have seen almost no movies. Don't ever ask me "Have you seen xxxx." I mean, you can ask me, but I probably haven't seen it). I laughted and laughed. Lester has also learned to make a laughing sound when we laugh--it sort of sounds like my highest-pitched, most squeaky laugh!

We slept and worked and exercised this weekend. I haven't had a regular yoga practice in weeks, and so was rather sore after a fairly standard mixed-level class on Friday. The place where my hamstring attaches to my hip etc continues to be sore, class or no. Too much sitting.

If I were going to be anywhere near the east coast next weekend, I'd go to the Festival of Contemporary Japanese Women Poets in New York. I'm excited about the bilingual book of translations from Litmus Press: Four from Japan. I like facing page translations. Even though I do not speak Japanese--I studied it for four weeks one summer in Singapore but can only remember how to say "I am a lawyer from ABC Television"--I will stare at the kanji!

I'm writing articles about home made holiday gifts. I like the idea of candied oranges with some kind of chocolate dipping sauce, but it doesn't sound very practical for something that has to be mailed. I'm going to be hauling all kinds of holiday gifts and other things off to Oman. Because of my weird ticket, I'm going to have to pick up my backs and recheck them at Heathrow. I'm not looking forward to it. But I am looking forward to wandering around the airport afterwards, and going to Boots. I'm looking forward to the drugstores in Oman, too. One of my favorite non-obvously touristy things to do in foreign countries is go to drugstores.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

I've started making something for the Haptic Anthology because 1) making things is fun 2) I want to contribute and I got my box yesterday and 3) making poems that aren't mostly about words helps me make better poems that are mostly about words. "About" isn't really the right preposition, but nevermind.



I've been thinking about a conversation I had in Chinese with a woman at a bookstore in Chinatown, SF last weekend. I remember the conversation and what she said and what I said, but I do not remember the words, and there's no way I could write it out. While we were talking I remember feeling the same way--that I knew exactly what she was saying without really recognizing individual words. Of course, I remember the words she used that I didn't understand, because I'd stop and ask, " blablabla 是 什麼?"

Last night, I had the first dream with other people in it that I've had in about two months. At least that I can remember. I should have written it down this morning. All I remember is that I stepped into a pool of mud and fall foliage, and Larry Malm, a highschool classmate, kind of dove in and lifted me out of it. I wasn't really worried about being in the mud, nor was I especially surprised that Larry hauled me out. Then, Larry introduced me to his girlfriend and she pointed to a television and said, "we won! we won!"

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Today I impressed students with my knowledge of sloths

Breakfast at Tartine was worth the line:


I'm wearing blue today. A blue shirt that is really a yoga shirt with an absurdly low v-neck. Because I am teaching today, I am wearing a black tank top under it. And then I am wearing a shortsleeved deep blue silk jacket from China with flowers on it. I am blue and layered.

Also, the thing around my nalgene bottle to keep the water (today, it's actually iced mint, green, and blood-orange tea) cold is also blue.

I can't remember what time anything is today. I've forgotten the times of regular apointments and meetings that have been going on, at the same time on the same days of the week, for at least two months. I'm writing articles about camping equipment for a website and thinking about how Mark and I should go camping.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

We're winning back the lowliest branch of government. Lester is attacking the keys.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Well, I'm being the kind of writer that always frustrates me when I'm an editor, the writer who takes unbearably long to send work and reply to emails and letters. I like to write and publish. I like to recieve mail. I even like to write letters, but there's barely been time for sitting and breathing. During October, this was half because of work and half because of poetry and half because travel. In November, it's all about work.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Things purchased today:

orange flower honey
dried lavender
tea
dumplings
dried sweet potatoes
dried mushrooms
a Chinese-English book of "101 American Customs"
a book of Chinese fables, made for foreigners like me who've forgotten their hanzi

Friday, November 03, 2006

If I were a poet

I am in SF. Actually Berkeley, visiting family. If I were I were a poet, where would I go this weekend? What are all the cool kids doing this weekend?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I've at last uploaded the pictures from the CalArts / Redcat / Impunities conference and put them into a set. If you're one of my flickr contacts, you can add tags, so please do. I don't think I'll have the chance to lable all the photos until next week, but at least they're no longer sitting on my camera.

Mark is reading at UCSD this evening in the New Writing Series.

Book Release Party for Omnidawn Press
Wednesday, Nov 1, 4:30 pm Visual Arts Performance Space

Contributors will read from ParaSpheres: Extending Beyond the Spheres of Literary and Genre Fiction, an anthology of Fabulist and New Wave Fabulist Fiction. ParaSpheres, which explores the porous boundary between mainstream literary fiction and the genres of fantasy, horror, and science fiction, has already gathered excellent reviews.

Featured contributors include:
  • L. Timmel Duchamp, the author of Love's Body, Dancing in Time and The Red Rose Rages.
  • William Luvaas, the author of The Seductions of Natalie Bach and "The Firewood War."Carol Schwalberg, whose short stories have appeared in Wordplay, Woman, Ita, and Fair Lady.
  • Noelle Sickels, who has published two historical novels, Walking West and The Shopkeeper's Wife.
  • Mark Wallace, the author of Nothing Happened and Besides I Wasn't There and Sonnets of a Penny-A-Liner.