Tag Archives: walk

Stuck Inside, Walking Yosemite 

2 Sep

I started that new Fitbit explore badge thingy today. Their version of Pokémon Go, minus location requirements, means that I can indeed be sequestered in the office as a managerial-bitch, yet still wrack up achievement points based on steps, alone… as I treadmill during booking calls. 

This should make being a caged animal less awful, one would think. 
… Jury is still out on that. 

… It is strange, this fake trek through this famous National Park, for a couple of reasons. One is that I have always loathed Yosemite for the unfortunate stigma it bought itself in my childhood, in that every single time I had visited it, I spent most or all of the trip horribly ill. 

… I don’t know why, but clearly my body just didn’t want me to be there. And it would vomit and fever and curl up in a ball to remind me of that fact, every time I dared to travel there. Despising the out-of-doors as much as I already did as a kid, I assumed Yosemite’s grandeur was like the epicenter of natural evil,  and I was literally rebelling against it, beyond all doubt. 

… But those days of hatred are gone now. A trip to Ireland cured all that, and a part of me thinks this Fitbit fake version of a visit to the park can finally help me slay this biggest monster of nature, in my past. 

… But it is also strange because Yosemite was my home. Well,  closest thing I’d use to pinpoint where “home”  was to people who didn’t know where my tiny town was…because there is no reason whatsoever that anyone ever should. 

… Because everyone knows “Yosemite.” Well, everyone knows OF “Yosemite.” Even if they call it “Yos-eh-mite” (which,  unbelievably, people actually do.) And if you’re from a tiny old gold-rush town,  where getting a new Safeway makes the front page for a solid week, Yosemite is the only way you could relate to the area I come from. 

…But even that is a lie. Because you have to go an hour away from “home”  to get there. To this place where Mother Nature just puked all over everything in kinda the best hangover scenario ever. 

… My home town is more scrub brush, and foothill. But it does have lakes. And trees. Gets snowfall. Has nature in variety of aspect, just not juiced up on all the beauty steroids. 

… So, this whole fake trek thing is weird to me because it reminds me of home in a lot of ways, both good and bad…and my kiddom, and the summers we’d spend by the lakes for endless hours, and the horrible camping trips I despised,  and all the times I chose to sit inside reading a book (all damn day)  instead of exploring things outside my room, (or the tent.) And how ironic that I am now “stuck”  inside all day, looking  out,  taking fake nature walks on a handheld computer. 

… I’m saying: life is strange. I wouldn’t give up the books. (And I still loath camping.) But, much like the forced naps in childhood that I despised, (which I would often give.. I dunno… back teeth,  for the extravagance of having today) , I kinda wish I’d have known some of this shit ahead of time. 

… But then,  don’t we all… 

~D

The Vocal Rest Conundrum

1 Dec

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You would think that a person, alone in a house all day, could easily dedicate themselves to a necessary “vocal rest.”  But if it’s “me” we are talking about…forget it.

…I mean, for shit’s sake, I talk back to the fucking television, so this is a whole “thing” I have to actually pay attention and make a point to adhere to.

18 hours of silence. From end of last night to 6 PM today.

Last night, the cold graduated to in-and-out laryngitis, less than mid-way through performance…so I knew what would therefore be expected of me today. And I knew how hard it would be. Cuz this time last year, I was put on vocal rest ‘tween the matinee and evening performance of a musical, and it pert near killed me.

…Mostly cuz I had to be where everyone else wasn’t, so I could actually stick to the plan. It sucked. All the laughing and gabbing I was missing out on, just cuz I was trying to be “responsible,” and things. The weird thing is: I’m totally “responsible”…except when I’m tired of it, and then: I’m not. And right now, I’m tired of this fucking cold.

…I’ve coaxed, and coddled, and medicated, and mothered it non-stop, doing all the things you’re supposed to. And, aside from actually leaving my house in order to you know, “make a living” and fulfill my contracts and things…I’ve been LITERALLY in bed, every spare minute between the two.

No hang time with the cast.

No drinks.

No last day with The BFF.

No Zoo Lights, or Christmas time shenanigans.

No singing in the car…

…And (though not through lack of trying), also: no sleep.

It’s been night sweats with tossing and turning, peeling, raw, red noses, unlimited supplies of snot manufacturing, and a slowly depleting voice. I don’t have a choice but to cater to it all and continue to babysit it in every waking moment. I don’t have a choice but to honey and lemon-dose my way to sugar-shock…or hot doddy with actual liquor for the next two hours, giving a dignified amount of time to wear off and sweat out the buzz before curtain tonight.

…And I CANNOT go outside…in the one day of sunshine we’ve had in forever…to take a walk.

Not even a little one.

Not even bundled up.

…I have to just lay here, administer gunk as needed, extricate it from my body as it is produced, and keep m’damn mouth shut.

All. Day. Long.

…I’m been up since 9:30…have been peeing hot tea, cyan pepper and lemon extract for three days, and the amount of interaction I “cannot” have with my festing of “Slings and Arrows” right now, is freakin’ killin’ me, people.

…It’s killin’ me.

~D

First Dress

4 Nov

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Hello civilians, and welcome to first dress rehearsal. 

…Our call is late, due to blocking of the the theatre’s follow-up Holiday show taking place on the same stage, directly before our call.  In short: the December show is running about on our stage right now, (as we once did to “Sherlock”)…and will continue until 4:30…at which time we begin arriving in shifts in various states of makeup and hair, to tag-team, sort out some adjustment fittings, and ship things directly out into the makeshift on-site alteration and stitching department currently holding state in the lobby. 

…As of yesterday’s costume parade, I had nothing to wear but my corset, shoes, and stockings. They are still piecing my blacks together, built in copy pattern to a gray dress I tried on a little over a week ago, whose color was veto’d but style and fitting was approved.  Will be doing my hair and makeup at home, to avoid time-crunch and also have a slew of my own outlets for various curlers and irons, as I invent the styles to begin with. Plenty of elbow room, music, and pictorial inspiration on the internet, ready on my computer, at click-command.

…Also, right now: a stew is cooking in the crockpot.

Got up this morning to make a cup of coffee, and feed meat and veg into the slow-cooker, before surveying the damage of last night’s spur-of-the-moment mini party. 

A couple of casties, (post eats, post cue-to-cue), didn’t want to give up the ghost quite yet…so I rushed home to prep their arrival, and make sure we had enough mixers.  Many talks on many subjects, with “Anonymous” on in the background, a shared stogie on the back patio, a trip planning thrown out there, and YouTube vomits of the most ridiculous videos we know of, that we feel compelled to force other people to watch and thus be forever equally scarred from, for life.

…Marty, I think, wins for that South African husband and wife freak-team.  And you can wonder at all it’s wrongs here, should you choose. (Their “Ninja” one is as least as horrifying.)

I need more coffee, but the last bag of beans has been killed, and I mourned it, even before this one cup was done perking. Thus, I am forced into tea…which is lovely when you want tea, but when you want “coffee” there is no solace to that desire unless you feed it what it demands.

Coffee is very S&M that way.

4 hours and 24 minutes left on the stew clock, and a sink-and-a-half of dirty dishes to see to.

…But first: heat some water, pop in some “Shakespeare In Love” or “Stage Beauty” or “Henry V” or “Richard III”…or any of the eleven-hundred others keeping to the current theme…take a walk, take a shower, and set my hair to begin the regime.

This is one of those days where you spend almost all of it, just prepping for the end-game…as first dresses always have, and always will be.

~D

Death Of Keurig

10 Oct

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My Keurig exploded this morning.

…Well, actually it was more like it pooped chunks.  I knew it was all gonna go south when it took me two minute to clamp the cup in so the water lid would pop up.  The clamp wouldn’t stick.  Kept swirling the cup canister dealy-boop that lets you put whatever fresh grounds you want in it…but the lip musta been off or something on the top, because clamping was just not happening.

…And reasoning didn’t help at all.  Threats either.

Finally I managed to shove it all together, popped the “go” button, and shuffled back to bed to sit out the perk time, while staring into oblivion and contemplating the effort of keeping my eyes both open simultaneously. After the final colicy burps and hisses announced completion in the other room, I shuffled back to the kitchen to find coffee ground diarrhea leaking all down the sides of the Keurig and cup and onto the counter top.  Only about half of the liquid-ground mixture actually made it into the mug, which I blinked at with a sigh. 

…This is where tea strainers come in handy.

…Grabbing another mug, I glopped the mixture through a strainer into it, losing more along the counter and floor for my efforts, and then just left it all sitting there as I brought my two inches of coffee left to the cause, with me to the shower.

In the best of cases, mornings and I aren’t friends. This one seemed to pre-doom itself from the beginning, but then calmed down to something more manageable later in the day. It’s only fair really, when you start out that pathetically.

…And now, the first time I’ve been able to take a break for the day, I’m only one hour out from calling it here at the office, and going home. A clammy walk in misty fog will be my next challenge for the day, followed then by four hours of Act One review at rehearsal. Somewhere in there: more line runnings, the manufacturing and eating of “dinner,” and fixing of the Keurig…so we can relive it all again tomorrow.

I’m game.

…It’s totally gonna be fine as soon as I start moving again and pretend like my ass isn’t just permanently affixed to this swivel chair with a phone glued to my ear.

…Fifty more minutes, friends. Only just fifty more.

Even I can do that.

~D

Ode To My Bed

29 Sep

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Is there anything better than a good night’s sleep going into a Saturday morning?  S’pecially when the fan is blowing just enough, that you gotta snuggle deeper into your blankets…burrow for a bit, just your face poking out, like a papoose.

…Pillows hugging your head…the rested “you” smell, mixed with fabric-softened bed linens. You lay on your side and look at the sunlight struggling to get in through the drawn blinds.

What will you do today? 

…So few Saturday mornings now, when a rehearsal won’t immediately push you outta bed and into the shower.

…Morning nibbles? Maybe you’ll bake some scones.  With that strawberry/champagne jam, from World Market.  Melted butter.  Coffee.  Not the heavy Italian roast. Something more mellow, and easy…a breakfast roast or Oooo…some of the Kona, your friend brought back from the Big Island. Now, is to enjoy the taste of the roast…not chew it. It doesn’t need to smack you in the face today, just tickle you awake…softly.

…And a walk.  It’s prob’ly amazing out in the world right now…all sunny with that fall-snap breeze to it.

You roll over and look at the clock.

10:30.

…Such good sleeps…no one in the world had gooder sleeps that you last night.  The deep kind, where dreams don’t even register. Like you died, over night, and were resuscitated with the morning…which could prob’ly be seen as kinda creepy, but it isn’t…not in the way that you are thinking of it.  Souls resting peacefully, with plant friends, and a layer of fall leaves to keep them cozy and in good company.

And a streeeeeetch!

You yawn.

Yes.  Coffee.  Coffee, prob’ly while snuggled back here in bed.  Prop up the mountain of pillows, pop on the laptop, and sip and read…catching up on all the blog-friend posts you’ve missed this week.  Then, a little breakfast.  After that: a walk.

…The house is already cleaned.  The Fish are bathed.  You did well with lines yesterday and are on pace with where you wanted to be, and know what is needed of today.

But not yet.

…Just a minute or two more of this.

Of bed. And sheets. And quilted blankets. 

…Of pillows in great mounds and starfishing stretches.

Saturday mornings…

Mmmm…

~D

Short, Sweet & Simple

24 Sep

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Nooooot a great day, you guys.  But it ended well.

…A walk to separate the “work” day, from the “life” part.

…Rehearsal, to side-track and refocus a little “purpose” and “joy.”

…And a two hour conversation with a new “old” friend.

It’s funny what happens when you try to condense and catch up ten years of time in one conversation. Almost impossible.  You end up laughing lots.  And getting suddenly very real about things.  More “real” than the more conservative you, is usually comfortable with.  But for some reason, in this case, it’s okay.

…Which is really nice, from where I sit right now.  If I’m telling the truth.

Sometimes it is exhausting to be so protective and conniving.  Today is one of those days. So, possibly, they planned the call really, really well…and it was fate.  Or I’ll never hear from them again. It might be a toss up. I dunno.  But for two hours, we managed to air some grievances, and voice some frustrations, and laugh at some jokes…and there are worse things that people who haven’t spoken in a decade could do.

I think.

…I’m still pretty new at this.

Anyway…a short post.  Lots of ellipses.  It’s been one of those days, But, most of my daily writing therapy went into an actual “person” today…no need to burden it all on you, now.

Suffice it to say…I think I’ll break the 3-day anti-sleeping record tonight, and dream of better things.  Or at least funnier ones. 

…And Mrs. Johnson will behave herself…because the two glasses of wine I just consumed, pretty much require it.

…And I might feel a little squirrely and happy in “possibility” ways…like a ridiculous teenager.  Which I’m gonna say is totally fine, and also, “good for me!”

Good for me!

…And it is.

…Because I am entirely too predictable as a human being.  Even The BFF says so.  So, here I am, mixing shit up and being TOTALLY random! God, she would be so proud of me right now!

Yep.

Yep.

…Yep.

That’s all I’ve got to offer tonight. 

Short.

Sweet.

Simple.

…Sweet.

Huh.  Now there’s a change.

🙂

~D

Word Fairies, On A Walk

17 Sep

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A walk.  To battle the  Monday-after-Vacation, gross obeseness of crud.

…There’s this walk I take, that we call “the loop.”  It’s the long circle that takes you down the full length of the north-end neighborhood, and round to the point, looking down on Old Town, rising up from the sea. I usually take it when my brain is too full to negotiate actual directions and choices. It’s easy because it never wanders too far from itself and always comes back home again…like a good dog. Which is really convenient when you’re clearly too busy talking to yourself like a schizo, about all the things you didn’t get around to today, but need to, and how the associated reporting materials will be filled out, and in which order.

…Also, the ocean is good to focus on after a rough day. (If you let yourself.)  It’s calming, somehow.  Maybe because it’s bigger than anything that could possibly be bothering you at the time.  Maybe because it’s so “in your face,”  that you can’t help but get sidetracked by it.

…Sorta like how you can trick a kid outta crying if you give ’em something new to focus on, instead of whatever it is they first wanted, or was taken away, that they can’t have now.

I totally know how that kid feels, today.

Those bastards stole my vacation goodness away…and I was pretty ticked about it. 

…So clearly, after work was done, (and my car payment was made), “the loop” was in order. 

…Anyway…the point I was getting at is: mid-between casa de mi, and the beginning of “the loop,” is this house:

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About once a week, they print out a poem, short story or anecdote in bulk, and plop it in that little plastic holder bolted on the post and driven into the ground, just on the corner, there. I dunno what the owner’s story is…I frankly don’t think anyone does.  And not too many people take the souvenirs, but I know I’m not the only one who stops to at least read ’em.

The rule is: it can only take up one page. 

…So far, that’s the only quantifying identifier in content or theme. And it has become an addictive reader board, like a fortune cookie’s guts, housing who even knows what words of wonder, day-to day. The top black flip-up cover says, “take one”…like those realtor get-ups you might use to sell a house.  Only this one is used to sell you “thoughts” instead.  Sometimes they’re goodish ones.  Sometimes not. Sometimes I wanna write a note back, and pop it in the box, for the Word Fairies.  Things like:

” I liked the one about the dog.”

…or…

” Sylvia Plath isn’t always totally depressing like I thought

…or…

” This one hurt my inside parts.  But that’s okay sometimes.  So, thanks.”

…Also, I wonder if they take requests?

” Maybe less Politics please…”

” Can you find something about sunshine for the next one?  It’s been raining for six solid weeks…”

” Have you ever considered limericks?  I’d suggest a good Dottie Parker…”

Regardless…its always nice to have some clean, warm air…to hear the sound of sprinklers and dog pantings and runner’s tread…and watch the sun set out over the water.  Its nice to have words like these in my head, other than the chanting of “to do” lists for tomorrow, and the balancing of my checkbook.  Those things can wait.  But a hard-earned piece of goodness and mental rest after a long day, cannot.

…So: “Thank you, Word Fairies.  Keep up the good work!”

(Here are a couple, most recent…)

***

Poem: “The Clearing,” by Gregory Djanikian
from “The Man in the Middle” (Carnegie-Mellon University Press)

**”Poetry is an act of generosity.” ~ Don Skiles**

And something will happen:
You will stand at the edge of a field

hearing the wind-skirted
leaves of the trees, and you

will try to remember
the woman you almost married,

though her life will spiral
like a hawk away from you,

and you will want her,
as deeply as you’ll want

the hawk to settle on your fist,
or the wind to empty

your eyes of grief for all
you’ve renounced to become

what you now are, but
nothing this day will claim you,

neither hawk, nor wind, nor lover,
and you’ll sense how your past

has seduced you through the years
to this field, this reckoning,

to, finally, this poem
which you will write by learning

what matters is not the words
but the unlabored

breath through which
they’re spoken and given up,

like hawks, or lovers
or this life you keep on revising.

***

Poem: “You should at times go out, ” by Elizabeth Daryush

You should at times go out
        from where the faithful kneel,
visit the slums of doubt
        and feel what the lost feel;

you should at times walk on,
        away from your friends’ ways,
go where the scorned have gone,
        pass beyond blame and praise;

and at times you should quit
        (ah yes) your sunny home,
sadly awhile should sit,
        even, in wrong’s dark room

or ever, suddenly
        by simple bliss betrayed,
you shall be forced to flee,
        unloved, alone, afraid.

***

~D

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