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I have wanted to do this for years, and now that I have some time on my hands and enough money to keep the wolves temporarily at bay, dammit, I am going to do this.

A couple of weeks ago, I signed on to take a eries of horseback riding lessons with [ profile] lyonesse.  I had my first lesson two weeks ago and meant to start my riding log then, but better late than never.  Last week was bitter cold, too cold for the ponies.  This week on the other hand we have a lovely thaw and all of the ice is melting so I am really looking forward to getting out there again.

First lesson: 

[ profile] lyonesse showed me how to put the bridle on the pony, mount, and we practiced starting, stopping, turning, and reviewed overall communication with the pony.  I learned among other things that a panicky "Whoawhoawhoa...." sounds a little like the command to tolt, so I am learning not to do that.  And not to panic.  I rode bareback, which was delightful, and managed to not pull a Gimli (i.e., fall completely off) even when the pony jump over a snowbank.

Best part of the day was learning how to brush, groom, and massage the pony afterwards.  His coat is delightfully shaggy and warm and he visiably loved having his ears rubbed. 

More later.   My plan for now is to go at least once a week-- much depend's on [ profile] lyonesse's schedule and where she can squeeze me in.


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Watertown, MA, Town Diner:

I just met Eliza Dushku.

She was visiting her folks for the holidays and they were all hanging out at the table next to mine at the Town Diner (best down home cooking in Watertown).  Looking very sultry and lovely of course, and yes, she had that pouty lip thing going on.  Her parents were also thoroughly charming.

[ profile] the_red_shoes, I know you are going to ask:  she was eating the veggie stir-fry special.

[ profile] tar_miriel gets credit for recognizing her ("I tell you that *is* Eliza Dushku....")

Yes, I told her how much I love Buffy and that faith is my favorite.  I bet she gets that all the time.  I feel all fan-girly and silly right now. :-)

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My favorite Christmas song, thanks to dear Balthazar in that fourth verse:

Myrrh is mine, its bitter perfume
Breathes a life of gathering gloom;
Sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying,
Sealed in the stone cold tomb.

My gothic heart just soars.

Snow is pouring down here in Upstate NY, and I wish I were home to walk about amid the soft flakes in Mount Auburn cemetery.

Merry Christmas to all! 

Unrelated Note:  Do any of my Boston area friends have *coughcough* Word for Macintosh software which I could *coughcough* borrow?


Nov. 4th, 2008 11:47 pm
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YYYYYYEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!  I am no longer all out of happy!  Happy is back!


And yeah, I am happy for the doggies and will happily buy my weed one ounce at a time now....

Okay, I need to sleep now....
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1. Stop talking about politics for a moment or two.
2. Post a reasonably-sized picture in your LJ, NOT under a cut tag, of something pleasant, such as an adorable kitten, or a fluffy white cloud, or a bottle of booze. Something that has NOTHING TO DO WITH POLITICS.
3. Include these instructions, and share the love.

I can't hold a candle to [ profile] ahli 's beautiful still from The Piano, but (and yeah, I know it isn't a picture, but I think you'll forgive me) here one of my favorite clips from Truly, madly, Deeplyof  Alan Rickman. Singing:

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(Lemons) Pear Appears

If it's there, it's something --
And when you see it,
not just your eyes know it.
It's yourself, like they say, you bring.

These words, these seemingly rounded
Forms -- looks like a pear? Is yellow?
Where's that to be found --
In some abounding meadow?

Like likes itself, sees similarities
Everywhere it goes.
But what that means,
Nobody knows.

Robert Creeley
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The Meme:  Take a picture of yourself, right now, as you are.  Do not edit the picture in anyway.  Post it!

Okay, here we go-- the blur you see is Parvati in bad girl mode, trying very hard to steal my Humbolt Fog cheese while I hold her back, and being far too hell bent on dairy products to mug for the camera: 

Oh, she does like that cheese.  See the predator's determination!

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Originally uploaded by Jewelweed
The other weekend, I did some modeling for the lovely Ivana George.  This is just a preliminary image. It is going to be part of a larger installation. I kind of threw my guts into the role. :-)

Aside from having to scrub the verdigris body paint off my body afterwards,  it was a wonderful weekend. I sort of forgot that I had painted my nails red, but I think it works.

I want to do stuff like this more often.

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Older News:  Kali is doing very well, has her appetite back and is eating like a very tiny truck-driver, and no longer seems inclined to hide in corners being sorrowful.  I am still going to cat-proof the attic with window screen material and a staple gun though, per [ profile] panjianlien's suggestions. 

A brief stressful trip to the vet basically revealed that she was having a reaction to the antibiotics. After screening her to make sure there was no possibility of infection, the vet took her off that medication.  We also determined that she was past needing the painkillers, so now she is back to just the tummy medicine and the appetite-perker-upper.  We've also added very low doses of Prednisone and she seems to be improving.

Provincetown:  Was glorious, though terribly crowded.  I've found though that if you just avoid most of Commercial Street it is manageable.  I spent another day trolling the art galleries on the East End (a lot of summer resort kitch interspersed with some texcellent paintings by contemporary artists, including a show of contemporary Chinese painters, and abstracts by Jeannie Motherwell).

NYC:  Heat wave. I cooled my heels at the Turner exhibit at the Met and in the park and stayed at the funky Carleton Arms.

Maine:  A long bike ride for me along the coast of Southern Maine. Stayed near Higgins beach where I hung out with a surfing labrador puppy (yes, his big people trained him to jump on a surfboard).  Much fun ensued.

Last Weekend:  Did a photo shoot with the lovely Ivana George who dressed me up as the statue of Liberty being tortured and interrogated while bound up in scraps of an American flag.  It was remarkably fun, the only down side was that the green body makeup was bitch to take off.  I will post one of the photos later.  She is using it for a larger installation.

In Current News:

  • I really need a new job. This place is driving me around the bend. I have never in my life felt so much like a minion running around in a gerbil wheel, pushing around paper and spending more time documenting what what my job is than I spend actually doing it. I REALLY REALLY need to do something different with my life.
  • I am shamefully out of touch with [info]drglam and [info]lyonesse-- must do something about that ASAP
  • I'm going to a poetry slam this evening with  [info]d_roneous  
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She is in recovery.

They took all the biopsies they needed and predictably her lower intestine and liver looked the most serious.  The good news is that it is all treatable once we know what is causing all this.  Treatment is likely to involve steroids.  I'll learn more about that later.

However because she is such a tiny kitty with almost no body fat (this is part of the whole problem) she became very cold during the procedure, more so than they usually run into.  They kept her bundled up in heated blankets in the recovery area with a nurse by her side taking her vital signs every few minutes. I just received word that her temperature is finally almost back to normal and she is lively enough now to have growled at the nurse who took her blanket away in order to replace it with a fresh warm blanket.

She has her pain patch on and will have more pain medication and antibiotics to take, as well as more medication for her lower intestine.  Partly because she is so tiny her recovery will probably be a little slower than a more robust chubby kitty would experience, so this weekend will involve much in the way of warm Irish wool blankets, snuggles, and treats brought to her bedside.

She is wearing the Elizabethan Ruff now, which alas means much wounded dignity,  so, yeah, more nose kisses and treats.

Damn, after all this I hope her condition improves.
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Here is the one and only Tarkan, the one who made all my students go "Sqqqqqueeeeee!" back when I was living in Turkey:

I'd say "yum yum" but I learned the hard way that that has a very different meaning in Turkish. :-) Heheh.
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ErsoyTurkish singer on trial for criticizing army service

Bulent Ersoy faces more than 2 years in prison for saying during a live television show that if she had children, she would not send them to the army to fight Kurdish rebels. [MORE]

I know this is not on everyone's radar, but Bulent Ersoy is something of a phenomenon in Turkey, and this is a big deal there. 

Ersoy  began her career as a male singer, became something of a heart throb, and then in 1981 made headlines when she transitioned, one of the first public figures in Turkey to do so. 

In the eighties, she had significant problems with the Evran regime especially during Turkey's military coup-- In a crackdown on "social deviance," Ersoy's public performances were banned along with those of other transsexual and transgendered people.

You can visit her website at Diva Bulent Ersoy, where there are a lot of clips of her performances (can't watch them myself right now since I am supposed to be working...)
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Constant Vigilance!

This is an intensely focused Parvati, on duty guarding the house from all those birds who keep coming to my windowsill to eat the sunflower seeds I put out for them. 


She wants everyone to know she is *very* hardworking and will not let them out of her sight for a moment.  The birds want you to know that they have absolutely no fear when it comes to sunflower seedy goodness.

I took this picture with my phone.  Not blurry at all!  Why can't my camera pictures to look at least this crisp? 

I took some pictures of Kali as well, but she looked very cross in the pictures since I woke her from her nap.

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A recent post by  [personal profile] kylecassidy   made me deeply wistful. There is a production of Margaret Edson's play W;t  going on right now in Philadelphia, starting Susan Giddings, which is by all accounts awesome. I never actually got to see this play staged. I saw the film with Ellen Thompson of course, and read the script-- but I never seem to be in the same city where it is actually being staged.

Maggie Edson was a classmate of mine at Smith. Well, actually, I was one of many worshipful freshmen who were deeply in awe of her talent. During my freshman year she completed a massive project as a Smith Scholar translating and staging The story of Santa Guglielma by Antonia Pulci, the fifteenth century Italian author of three well known religious plays of the period (a genre known as "sacre rappresentazione"  plays which were staged by confraternities, laymen's organizations affiliated with churches or religious houses).

Edson's project was a labor of love, like nothing I had ever seen but was actively dreaming about when I set off for college in 1982. The production itself was staged much as it may have been in the fifteenth century, a great pageant involving many, many people. I remember workshops on costuming, on the making of period rosary beads, and my writing tutor Marcia Williams printed an exquisite letterpress edition of the translation 1 (her press was the Charissima Press, and I recently found a copy for sale online).

Ruth Mortimer, curator of the Rare Book Room at the William Allan Neilson Library (which was later named for her after she died way too young) and a specialist in sixteenth-century French and Italian books, was her adviser and mentor, and Maggie dedicated the work to her 2

Word has it (I read this in an interview with Maggie, though I don't remember where) that years later, after Maggie wrote W;t, she contacted Ruth-- only to find out that she was recently diagnosed with a very inoperable form of cancer and was dying. Such a strange irony given what the play is about.  So although the main character was not in fact based upon Ruth (Maggie actually drew from her experiences working in a hospital while she was in Graduate school 3), for people who knew Ruth it is deeply infused with her brilliance and spirit.

[personal profile] kylecassidy    and [profile] trillian_stars    graciously invited me to come down and see the play-- unfortunately it is only playing until 6/28, and due to other commitments and especially Kali's upcoming biopsy (I will need to be with her on paw-holding duty that weekend) I don't think I will be able to make it. 

Damn.  I hope though that I will be able to meet you guys (and Roswell!) in some other context some other time.  You really made my heart shine yesterday, and I just wanted to thank you for that!  :-)

1 This was a watershed moment for me: it was when I pretty much fell in love with the books arts, and when it occurred to me that I could in fact start my own literary magazine and simply print it myself and make it all really beautiful. Two years later the first letterpress edition of the Green Age Review rolled off of the pressed, the type set by myself and my then boyfriend Arthur Larson using borrowed type and donated paper.

2 While curator, ruth was also instrumental in obtaining the Sylvia Plath Collection and the Frances Hooper Collection of Virginia Woolf. She also taught a course in the art department on the history of books and printing, which utilized the Rare Book Room's holdings. The rare book collection was named in her honor in 1994. She was also a scholar on the works of Mary Shelley and her Frankenstein collection now has a place in the Rare Book room.

3From the Wit Guide, linked in the first paragraph of this post: "Edson, for a while, thought that she would earn a doctorate and pursue a career as an academic, much like Vivian Bearing. In 1991, Edson began a Masters program in literature at Georgetown University. While completing her degree, she volunteered at St. Margaret's Episcopal Church to tutor a boy from the Dominican Republic. By the time she came to write her thesis, she knew academe was not for her. Her thesis project, on the use of poetry to teach reading, concluded with an oral defense in which Edson performed a Queen Latifa rap number before her faculty review panel. Song and poetry are now integral to her teaching in the kindergarten classroom.
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I am not at all sure how to sharpen this image, but this is a start.

Below are some snaps taken on Crane's Beach this weekend where I lounged and ate strawberries with [profile] martha_m
The self-portraits were basically me pointing the camera at myself blindly and clicking.  I need to find a better method--this one resulted in me having to delete dozens of shots of my shoulder (I kept a few since they made my shoulders look cute).

Picture taking advice is welcome!

Me on the beach, wearing a hatInscription in the sand
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Many happy returns, lovely [personal profile] erzebet!
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