This is all I’ve got right now.

Worst Month of the Year: February. February has only 28 days in it, which means that if you rent an apartment, you are paying for three full days you don’t get. Try to avoid Februarys whenever possible.

– Steve Rubenstein


A Treat from The Writers Almanac.

Psychology Today by Darnell Arnoult

Have you ever had

delusions of grandeur?

I read all about it

in a magazine

on the coffee table

at Dr. Broadwell’s office.

Have you ever thought

you were meant for

something special?

But you were afraid.

Afraid if you tried

you’d fail?


would think you

a fool?

You might risk


only for

delusions of grandeur?

I have.

Thought that, I mean.

Whew. Long Day.

I love getting up at 5:00 a.m. after I’ve had a good night’s sleep and we’re at the lake and the sun is coming up and everyone else will sleep for several more hours.  I love my time with my coffee, my journal, the morning birdies and  baby geese  paddling by with their moms.

I do not love getting up at 5:00 a.m., getting in the car and driving to Columbus in traffic and rain.  I do not love receiving disappointing but not surprising news about work.

It has been an extremely strange day and I need to do a whole lot of thinking about stuff that is important but not altogether very interesting .

I believe everything will happen exactly as it should.  How it will play out is bit of a mystery, though.

Helmet secure, shoes on the wrong feet.

This is how I plan to tackle the next few days:

Darn it!  The weekend by myself failed to clear the clutter from my head.  There is so much circling around in there right now, and most of it can’t be ignored.  Specifically I am juggling thoughts of summer plans, spring break details,  job uncertainty, a wallpaperless living room, a broken toilet downstairs, and extreme concern and fascination with Wisconsin and how things will play out now that more and more details behind their dastardly governor are surfacing.  Add to the list Ohio, Indiana,  and on an even more serious note, how short to get my hair cut this afternoon.

The trivial and the heavy matters are all floating around in the same soup pot.  And tomorrow is going to bring non-stop rain, with flood watches and another day without sunshine.  All I can surmise is that the heaviness of everything right now, and I am SO sure I am not alone in this heavy feeling, is part of some grand scheme to make the arrival of spring this year sweeter than it has ever, ever, ever been.


Except that my cat is nicer.

Every once in a while my Nosy Nellie persona kicks in, and I feel the need to cyberstalk the extreme right-wing friends of my conservative facebook friends.  The far right fascinates me, it really does, so naturally I am curious as to who and what these friends, and friends of friends, have on their “likes” list.

Why are so many women fans of Sarah Palin?  I mean, come on.  When she first came out,  I did make a concerted effort to understand her appeal.  I failed to find anything I liked, and believe me, I tried, because I’d like to believe that most people in the world have good intentions if you really get down to their core.

But the layers kept coming off, one after the other, with new ones peeling away daily.  For instance, how can someone seriously criticize an initiative  to reduce childhood obesity through healthy eating?   And why make fun of a First Lady who proposes measures to make breastfeeding more accessible to working mothers?  Wouldn’t this be like if someone told Laura Bush that helping children learn to read was creating a nanny state because parents should have the right to decide whether or not they want their children to be literate?

Here we’ve got this person who appears to get off on creating division and picking fights where there is no fight, yet millions of people just don’t see it that way.  She’s like my cat  sitting in the middle of a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle, looking cute and pretty until it’s time to take a swipe and send pieces and all our progress flying to the floor.   Look!  The perfect opportunity to be mean!  Sure, I could leave the table without making a disturbance, but where’s the fun in that?

Alone weekend.

San Sebastien, Spain, circa 1989

This morning  is around the midpoint of my alone weekend.  It’s gone okay so far.  I haven’t been as productive as I’d like, but  I’m trying to be fine with it, to release that guilt from not doing something. Still, there’s that constant, nagging feeling of  “I should be doing something.”  There are a basketful of tasks that I’d planned to tackle during these three days, but of course not everything will get done.  The time to think and clear my head has been helpful, so I now present a list of the extremely deep thoughts I’ve had over the past day and a half:

  • When I went to Kroger to get my provisions, I overstocked and understocked some items.  The next time I will know to get two bags of M & M’s, but not as many fancy olives.
  • I’ve spent more time than I thought I would staring into space wondering what to do next.  It reminds me of when the girls were babies and I knew I had a finite amount of time to do something but couldn’t decide what to do with it.  Do I work?  Do I play?  Do I rest?  And then as soon as I’d decided, the baby woke up.
  • Friday afternoon on East State Street made me feel like I might as well still be living outside of DC in Montgomery County, Maryland.  A traffic jam!
  • I love not being social.  The last time I was alone, I had some friends over, which was fun, but then a few of them stayed past when I was ready to be alone, and wow, it was frustrating.  I was ready for my evening solitude to begin, and they settled in for more chatting.  They don’t get quality girlfriend time that often, but since I get plenty of it (and am constantly grateful),  it was a struggle continuing to entertain them.
  • “Salt” is the perfect movie for an alone night.  I just love spy films; the more implausible the better.
  • Last night H. and I went to see “Unknown” with Liam Neeson and I loved that, too.  Not spies, though…ASSASSINS. Fun.
  • We went out afterward and talked about some very sad and some very funny topics.  The funniest moment was when H.  learned I can’t flirt.  It was a shocking revelation to her, apparently, since so many people enjoy it and know how to do it (I will not mention any names here).   Maybe the ability to flirt  is one of those secrets the world holds that I am not in on.  I would be a terrible spy if I had to flirt to save someone’s life or to prevent a bomb from going off at a gala filled with dignitaries.
  • Speaking of bombs, the clothes bomb that went off in Charlotte’s room has been contained.  I filled a bag of giveaway clothes and sorted that circus out.  I am not a huge fan of most of her wardrobe, but I didn’t spend a penny on it so probably shouldn’t complain.
  • I took a little country drive, but not a very exciting one.  Out County Rd. 25, down Terrell road (really steep), along River Road, then left on 50/32 and back to East State.  It was kind of disappointing, but that’s probably because it was a spontaneous decision and the only drive I could think of that would loop me back to Big Lots.
  • At Big Lots, I took a leap of faith and bought tampons from suspicious brands, one of them being Seventh Generation, and that is because I had no desire to go into to Kroger or CVS just for tampons. If you were a clerk and someone bought only a box of tampons (or condoms or diapers for that matter) wouldn’t your first thought be, “Hmm, don’t plan ahead much, do you?”  It is not time to use break them out yet, but I admit I’m not entirely confident in their protective abilities.

Today will be different time spent alone.  I’ll stick around here for a few more hours, then, depending on my mood, I may leave in enough time to take a little hike at Ash Cave.  I’ll take the camera and do some experimenting.  Then to Circleville to meet Mom and Dad for lunch, relax with them for a hours, and attend the installation service for the new minister.  I shall zip home and have my final night alone here. Maybe I will go see another movie or maybe I will make fancy brussels sprouts and carmelized tofu and watch something here.  Haven’t decided yet.

Decisions like whether or not to cook a fancy dinner for one or go to another movie  are what alone weekends are all about, right?

Friday thoughts.

If more people looked at this photo, there might be more global happiness.  I do worry about Dog #2, though.  Do you think he actually made it over?

With the warmth and bit of sun, I already feel a lift.  Who wouldn’t?   Sometimes I forget that this kind of weather makes everyone feel good, that it’s not just me and  my exclusive  little “I hate winter” bubble.  Today there is plenty to do.  Aaron and the girls are leaving around 2:00 for Maryland and before then I’d like to have the house cleaned and ready for my weekend of solitude.   If I can get caught up with my online grading that will mean TWO tasks completed that will clear the path for more enjoyable endeavors.

I have not made a single plan except to go to Circleville to see my folks on Sunday afternoon.  My planlessness is intentional.   Who knows exactly what I’ll be feeling up to as they back out the driveway?