Best wishes to all friends who are celebrating the varieties of Carnival this year — which began in Germany last night (Karneval, Fasching, Fastnacht, Fasnacht). I’d really like to be there this year — in years of significant political ferment the parades are always really interesting. And, well, the spirit of good feeling on the street is always wonderful, if one can tolerate the press of the crowds. I’ve been to events in Mainz and Cologne, but never to a Swabian-Alemannic community. (And yes: I’m aware that the Swabians consider Fasnacht to be something different from Karneval — but for someone like me they are both related to Shrovetide.) Anyway. Perhaps someday.
So, yeah, I keep posting pictures of Richard Armitage with words on them while my brain and my guts churn in the background.
Part of that is because on Sunday I cooked a pound of lentils in a soup with some onions and mushrooms and I ate them for lunch and dinner consecutively on both Monday and Tuesday so — wow. Explosive. Actually, it wasn’t my plan to embark on a program for intestinal health, but cooking for dad has narrowed the biological diversity of my gut biome. It’s just easier to cook things that we both like to eat. For some reason he’s okay with split peas, but not lentils, and he would not touch this soup. I mean, a lentil is just more or less a flattened split pea, no?
Or maybe it was the curry paste? Dad, frightened away by spices. Even so, I need to start recharging my digestive tract.
The sunlight helped a lot this week, although the weather is worrying. 60F while sturgeon spearing is still going on? The foolhardy are falling into the lake. Since bro is a volunteer fireman he gets to help rescue them, which is time-consuming, expensive, and really unnecessary so stay off the g-ddamn lake already when it’s this warm, people. I mean, how long have you lived here and you still haven’t noticed that ice melts? Although I guess bro does enjoy getting to drive the special high tech rescue boat so there’s that. Every cloud has a silver lining.
The real problem is just the news, day after day, and it was inevitable that la migra was going to schlep away someone I know, which happened last week in Austin. Finally motivated to do something I always said I’d never do, i.e., work in a school, I actually called up the local educational licensing authority, thinking my Spanish is probably still good enough and there’s a shortage of Spanish teachers in the state, maybe I could work my way into doing something supportive of immigrants’ kids. They’ll “analyze my transcripts” but their off-the-cuff response was that I am still not qualified to teach school in this state without further coursework. I say “still” because the governor and his party seem bent on creating a teacher shortage, which we’ve never had, and also heavily inclined to eliminate every requirement on the books for teachers and I am pretty sure within five years I’ll be able just to walk into a classroom and volunteer and they will take me. So now it would be two things I said I wouldn’t do: teach school AND get another degree. Honestly. There has to be a better way.
I hate the way my brain turns in circles. There’s too much to keep of track of. And yeah, I’m afraid of what’s happening right now.
Ray of light: Muslims raised at least $60,000 practically overnight to pay for repairs to the vandalized Jewish cemetery in St. Louis. Thank you, sisters and brothers who contributed to this sign of solidarity. I embrace you and will stand beside you.
So I get over-focused on the news and don’t write about Richard Armitage. I still have six posts from the December trip to Love, Love, Love, and my seventh blogiversary is coming up, which seems oddly significant. And I had ideas of stuff I wanted to write about that, but I find myself looking at pictures and thinking about the arcane reaches of English vocabulary.
The edges of the stories I’m working on flash past me when I drive past their locations. I am still trying to write a novel. Today I was thinking about the house on the corner where the farmer used to live and what a great story that place is. And about six days ago, the outlines of a complete story ran through my head and I wrote them down.
Where are the words??
(maybe that’s why I’m fixated on vocabulary at the moment)
If not now, when? As a friend reminded me today, the conditions are always bad.
I don’t need sympathy; nothing in my life is objectively even slightly horrible in comparison to what many, many others are experiencing, including people I know; I am a citizen, I have a safe place to live and food to eat, I just need to write. I am not suffering. I just need to make myself write.