3 April 2003
This is how things are here: yesterday I played a Green Day album. Green Day. One of the bands I look at in Timprov's big CD book and think, "Why do we have this again?" And then there are days like yesterday, when I think, "Ah, that's why." I couldn't get them out of my head. The song kept switching around, although I think what really did it was the obvious song's opening line: "Do you have the time to listen to me whine about nothing and everything all at once?" Subconscious asked it, conscious said, "No, not really," and went on working on the Not The Moose Book. But whistling. They even had the power plant song on The Simpsons. Nope. Billy Joe for me. Crud. And my mom isn't here to sing speech impediment madrigals with me and dislodge it, and Rachel's patented Bob Dylan/William Shatner method didn't work. So I put in the Gin Blossoms -- fight '90s with '90s! -- and will resort to the big guns if I have to: Nirvana Unplugged, "Free To Be You And Me," Liz Phair's "White Chocolate Space Egg," Arlo Guthrie and Pete Seeger's "Precious Friend" collaboration. Some of that will have to work to dislodge. Either that or I'll spend the afternoon feeling like I'm 16 again. We have plenty of the music from that time.
That was the last time I didn't know for sure where I'd be spending the next years of my life. I got engaged to Mark after my sophomore year of college, and he moved out here to go to Stanford, so that was pretty much that. So the last time I didn't know where I would be, Green Day was pretty new. Still seeing a lot of radio play. (In those days, they had alternative rock stations on the radio. With no Madonna whatsoever. Grrr.) I didn't even like them.
I don't like them now, either, but there is something to be said for the cheaply evocative. Satisfying rather than enjoyable.
For awhile, my theory was that I was not listening to enough music, and that may be, and I may try harder to remedy it. But I don't think it's the real problem. Obviously. Everybody around here is a bit of a mess -- a little sore throated, or a little nauseated, or a lot achy, or worried, worried, worried, or something. It is not the best of all possible springs, is what.
If this was the best of all possible universes, I would have one of Evan's strawberry doughnuts right now. If it was a better possible universe but still not the best of them, Evan would have one of his strawberry doughnuts. This is why Panglossian attitudes are so frustrating to me: because I have no strawberry doughnut.
There are other reasons, too, but there's an immediacy to strawberry doughnuts.
Do you know what I think? I think the Not The Moose is still good. I'm several more chapters in, and I still enjoy it. And it's mine. It's my work. It's not even done. But it's good. This rules. I just hope I can keep it up, but I think I can. I feel a bit like Jordan here, and I hope it turns out to be more of a sweater than a page-turning machine, as cool things go, but we'll just have to see.
I also think that expatriate lit is working pretty well for me, in all kind of contexts. I enjoyed The Scar more than I otherwise would have, because of it, and Paris to the Moon is good good. Probably would have been interesting in other contexts, but the person living with a small family in quite foreign circumstances feels very familiar to me. (Only if we were in France, I'd be able to get a good cup of coffee nearer than this.) Anyway, if you have expatriate recommendations, fiction or nonfiction, whatever genre or subgenre, do let me know.
So yesterday. Not much external, really. Work on the Not The Moose, a bit of reading, though not enough to get through Paris to the Moon, a bit of freewriting and title notation and so on. Much staring and thinking, a bit of talking on the phone (Aunt Ellen and C.J.). Mark finished DBM and talked to me a bit about it; I find in my inbox this morning that Aet did, too. So far, comments are generally positive, without a lot of specific caveats. Rah. I'd be okay with lots of specific caveats, too, though, because then I could fix them. Or decide not to fix them.
And, as I've said before, stuff I can fix is quite preferred.
The newspaper delivery is evidently not on that list, as I had three different phone calls to the newspaper people yesterday and three more from them. In order to get one 27 cent paper (including tax). I called again this morning. For the fourth time, I gave the gate code to our apartment complex. I don't really know where to draw the line here. I want to get the paper delivered to my doorstep. Canceling our subscription won't further that goal (the nearest other paper is delivered by the same people), but neither will keeping the subscription to a paper we don't receive. I'm just not sure what to do. At some point, I suppose I'll have to say, "I'm not going to pay you money not to deliver my paper -- I can not have a paper for free." But after that, I don't know. It's not at all the same thing to read news on the internet -- I already do that. And I can't bear local TV news at all.
Well, maybe they'll get things figured out. They have before.
I try to tell myself that it is not just one more thing, it's one thing, and the other things are all one thing, too, not additive things at all. Apples. Oranges. But I'm tired, and apples and oranges dropped on one's toes feel remarkably similar.
This will be my second Friday in a row. Yesterday was Friday as well. Usually when I've been having the wrong day, I feel disappointed or relieved when I figure it out. But today, well, whatever. The nice thing about having this Friday three times in a row is that it's Ed's birthday this Friday. But I think that would be nicer for Ed than for me, so I hope he's having the same confusion as I am.
I don't often wish my confusions on people. Sometimes they're good, though.
Glory be. We have a newspaper.
And the main page.
Or the last entry.
Or the next one.
Or even send me email.