Friday, June 12, 2009

The other day Berg with Fries served up the really interesting comparison of blog friends and imaginary friends.

Really, it was impressive. Like a grad school paper looking for a grad school (1).

I was reminded of it today as I found myself back reading through a bunch of postings on a blog that I used to visit daily but wandered away from as postings became fewer and farther between.

And between the time that I left and came back a lot had happened. I mean, A LOT.

Remember those seemingly perfect lives I mentioned a few posts ago? The ones where people suddenly woke up and discovered their lives had changed utterly and completely?

That kind of change.

It strikes me that I read a lot of the blogs that I read for the same reason that I love really good non-fiction. It's the thing that Ira Glass and those mad geniuses over at This American Life learned a long time ago.

Life really can be this amazing, complicated, utterly frustrating thing. The really good writers (2) are able to capture that reality and transform it into something that can fit squarely in the palm of your hand. Like a note passed in the back row of class.

The really bad ones?

Well, you just really irritate me (3).

1. Or a drunken ramble looking for a bar. Either way.
2. Whether it's for a book or a blog or that audio Graceland that is This American Life.
3. What can I say. Things were getting a little touchy feely.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

And the Smithsonian runs out to buy bumper cars...

There is a bowling alley in the basement of the Frick which, apparently, no one is allowed to use.

From the NY Times:

"'It’s one of those hidden places in New York, now isn’t it?' says Colin Bailey, the museum’s chief curator. After welcoming you in, Mr. Bailey will go on to say that the vaulted ceilings are of plaster, the red-tiled floors are Moorish in design, and the mahogany-paneled walls look back on the English tradition in a 'vaguely Jacobean way.'

You, of course, are likely to be more impressed by the stuff related to bowling: the pine-and-maple lane beds, the gravity-driven ball return, or the antique balls themselves, which strangely have two holes instead of the standard three."

I share this with you only because, well, secret hidden bowling alley.

And, because it reminded me of the following...which made me laugh.

So why not.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Sweet Dreams Are (Not) Made of These

So...you know how we're now all supposed to be suspicious of empathy?

Yeah. Um. Perhaps not so much.

Today someone (1) stood in front of me and described a dream that was so absolutely and completely negative and reflective of a total dismissal of my abilities I was dumbstruck.

First, because someone would be unable to process the meaning of a dream that seemed pretty clear to me.

Two, that someone would tell me about that unexamined dream and, despite having now described the dream out loud (2), still did not pick up on the fact that he or she should not be describing this dream to me.

Because, basically, your dream was saying that you think I suck.

No. Yeah. Really (3).

Suck.

Though apparently I'm quite gifted in dream interpretation.

1. Who will not be given a catchy anonymous blog name. That's right. I can play it like that.
2. For the third time!
3. For those who are wondering...yes. It did occur to me that this was wholly intentional and meant to be part of some strange corporate-styled dance that my art school brain can't comprehend. If this is the case, we have one more example of why I've not shot to the top of the corporate ladder and why I'm not writing this post from my house on the Cape.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Sigh.

I'm not normally a sigh kind of person but lately it's become a kind of signature sound for me.

Part of the issue is that I seem to be in this gray funk...somewhere between feeling sorry for myself and feeling downright exhausted.

Happily, there's a few shots of "new" coming my way.

The job...well...okay...that's still the old and there is much sighing going on there.

But in 10 days I will be making my first trip across the Atlantic. My first. The first time that my passport will be used outside of North America.

This means time away from the job.

This means being able to purchase books to read on the plane ride to distract me from the unnatural act of flying across an ocean.

And it gets better.

While wasting time window shopping the other day Leopold found a book about literary tourist stops...a book that included pubs where famous authors drank away the afternoon talking about the books they were going to be writing.

Sigh.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Maybe she didn't mean it.

Browsing the biography section I started to notice a pattern.

There seemed to be more than a few new memoirs out written by women who believed they were living the perfect life whose husbands either:

a) Left them.
b) Died on them.
c) Died on them after which they discovered he had cheated on them.

I was thinking about the myth of the "perfect life" while walking to the bank this morning before church. Our church is located in an area that, as the classic story goes, was dangerous and seedy before gentrification and good planning transformed it into the kind of place I can't imagine being able to live in.

The houses are beautiful. Windows ledges are as curated as any gallery or museum. Shrubs are politely groomed. Peeking in the window of a house that's for sale is like opening any of your favorite glossy shelter magazines.

Walking distance to good schools, good restaurants, fun pubs, any number of speciality shops and grocery stores. In about 15 minutes you can buy a book, a cup of coffee, a gourmet cupcake and be sitting on a bench by the water to enjoy all three of them.

In other words, it all seems quite perfect.

But are the people in all these perfect-looking houses really happy? Satisfied? Content? Are they really enjoying their lives or is this all just stage set?

And then, on cue, came a burst of laughter from one of the enclosed backyards.

Fine. Point taken.

Bites But Does Not Suck

Flipping channels last night I found that G4 had dubbed The Lost Boys a movie that doesn't suck.

I couldn't agree more.

I loved this movie when it first came out and, transfixed on the sofa, I found that I still loved it.

Only one thing bothered me.

I don't know why but I had never noticed the midrift-baring poster of Rob Lowe on Sam's (1) bedroom wall before.

What was that all about?

1. Played by Corey Haim.