Life Among the Never-Winged

Once upon a time I was writing a book called, "Just Another Love Letter", about angels behaving badly. Now I just quietly ask myself each day, "What the hell am I doing?"

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Location: The Rocky Mountain Empire, United States

My friends always knew I was going to hell. My only hope is that God likes good jokes and bad redheads.

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  • Sunday, December 30, 2007

    Fragile Things

    The parentals made it in safely, obviously. Thank you for your concern.

    * * *

    Things are going well. Very well. A pleasant change from my visit out there. My dad has settled into retirement now, I think. He's using us as guinea pigs. He'll be cooking a meal for 18 people in Tuscany this spring,so he's trying out recipes. Brioche stuffed with mushrooms, pine nuts and herbs. Roasted Brussels sprouts and artichokes in creme fraishe (I HATE Brussels sprouts but had three helpings of the stuff. Incredible.). Fried Cajun eggplant (old family recipe) with pork tenderloin in a raspberry and wine reduction sauce, which wins my vote. I've been acting as sous chef and taking notes. But the best part is that the boyos have been sous chefs too. They are really getting into cooking. Jack made mashed potatoes last night, and Declan made the fried eggplant tonight. My dad affectionately says to one or the other, “Hey, good job little chef.”

    It's nice, this change from last spring.

    * * *

    This vile cold continues. Last night I coughed until three, when I finally woke up enough to get up and do something about it. I drifted off then, and sometime after that briefly awoke in that warm, floaty place that only the right type of cold medicine and a shot of whiskey, honey and lemon can take you. The night-fears that normally nibble away at me only got a mouthful of fuzz for their trouble.

    * * *

    This afternoon I read a few short stories from my battered new copy of Gaiman's 'Fragile Things', then without meaning to, I took a nap. I just couldn't help it. The bed was soft, and warmed by sunlight. The boyos were downstairs and oh so quiet, and there were three other people in the house to watch them.

    Napping is so out of character for me that I spent the time dreaming several nap-related dreams. In one, I dreamed that while I was napping my parents were randomly taking food out of the refrigerator and dumping it into a casserole for dinner, and the top ingredient was jam. Then I dreamed that the boyos had gotten into something that they weren't supposed to while I was asleep. Finally, I dreamed that I woke up in October.

    So when I did finally wake up, I was quite disoriented, remembering the old Chinese adage about the Buddhist monk dreaming he was a butterfly, then awakening and wondering if he was a butterfly now dreaming about being a monk. It didn't help when I wandered out into the kitchen and saw that the Christmas candy (Frangos!*) on top of the refrigerator had transformed into a bag of Halloween candy.

    I stood there blinking up at the purple bag of chocolate Jack-o-lanterns, then back down at the counter. Which had a new jar of raspberry jam sitting on it.

    Apparently while I was asleep, my parents had gone to the grocery store to pick up a few things, one of them being raspberry jam for the aforementioned raspberry and wine sauce. And the oh-so-quiet boyos downstairs had been quiet because they ran across the bag of leftover-from-god-knows-which-Halloween candy. My mom found them halfway through it, and confiscated the bag.

    Even when I sleep it seems I can't sleep.

    * * *

    Other than that it's been pretty normal around here.

    * * *

    The red balloon from the picture of the mantel has become a sort of pet. It's lost most of its helium so it floats midway in the air through the house, following currents of warm air from the fireplace. Turn around, and it's floating right behind you. It's...comforting.

    * * *

    Alongside 'Fragile Things', I'm reading 'Harpo Speaks!'. I used to love Harpo when I was a girl, because he seemed so sweet and innocent and mischievous, so faun-ish. Now I love him because when he was fourteen he played piano in a whorehouse and thought nothing of it.

    I never realized how similar he was to Anton LeVey. He is so going into Salazar's character.

    * * *

    Ok. Bed.

    *The Frangos were actually from my mother-in-law to my parents. Ha ha. Some of you are probably laughing right now.

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    13 people left me a love letter:

    Blogger meno wrote in a love letter...

    One time my parents got a phone call because my brother and sil were out of town and their alarm had gone off. Turns out it was a wandering balloon that had set it off.

    Sounds nice at your house right now, especially the food. I can't imagine a recipe that would make me eat brussel sprouts, so it must have been good.


    9:29 AM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger Irrelephant wrote in a love letter...

    I can't tell you how glad I am things with the 'rents are going well. Your writing is, as always, worth waiting for, but the one thing that caught my mental eye and held it was "...I dreamed that I woke up in October." What a marvelous thing to dream, and somehow just a little unnerving, as all the best things are.

    Happy Gnu Year, Pants!

    11:07 AM, December 30, 2007  
    OpenID wheelsonthebus wrote in a love letter...

    I'm still stuck on the dinner for 18 in Italy...

    1:00 PM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger Bud wrote in a love letter...

    I'm glad your parents are behaving on your turf. I hate brussels sprouts and artichoke hearts so I'm quite sure I wouldn't be tempted by that but the rest of the stuff? YUMMO!

    Napping is good no matter what you mind decides to do with that time. Your body needed it. Your mind is another problem I don't know how to fix. But I don't think it needs fixing. It just needs to give you a break.

    Hey, do something serious about that cold, damn it!

    Happy New Year, Pants!

    4:32 PM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger patches wrote in a love letter...

    Napping Dreams are the best dreams...I'm an expert.

    6:35 PM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger Lynn wrote in a love letter...

    Good to hear that things are going well with your parents. I would love it if someone came to my house and cooked. Of course if that happened I would think that I had fallen asleep and was dreaming. Waking up in October would be o.k. by me:~)

    9:04 PM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger JustCallMeJo wrote in a love letter...

    The Frangos were a gift TO the parentals...?


    *big fat grin*
    /jo, who is in an Eagle hotel, snowed in

    10:23 PM, December 30, 2007  
    Blogger Des_Moines_Girl wrote in a love letter...


    Sorry - your description of the food made me start licking my computer screen. I really like stale Halloween candy! ;-)

    Seriously - your Dad sounds like a hellava cook! And how cute to have the boyos helping! You should get them (if you haven't already) matching aprons and chef hats!!!!

    So glad you are having a better visit. I agree with Bud - they might be behaving cuz they are on your turf. But don't question too much, just go with the flow.

    Happy New Year!

    5:27 PM, December 31, 2007  
    Blogger Cheesy wrote in a love letter...

    I see I planned my visit at the wrong time.. that meal sounded faboo! Did you get pics of the twins cookin?? Toooooo fun.. Happy New year baby gurlie!

    9:37 AM, January 01, 2008  
    Anonymous clowncar wrote in a love letter...

    Harpo Speaks is a very sweet-natured book, isn't it? I love his descriptions of the Algonquin round table. They all seem so sad and witty.

    To respond to your question from the previous post (spoiler alert!), at the end of the Shining the caretaker guy has seemingly ferried them all to safety, but spies a croquet set and begins to ponder bashing their heads in with the mallet. Scary!

    Glad your Dad is acting minding his p's and q's. The food sounds yummy.

    10:00 AM, January 01, 2008  
    Blogger Maggie wrote in a love letter...

    I've been worrying a bit about you and the visit. I'm feeling relieved and happy that your dad is enjoying your boyos.

    Sounds like you're having a foodie Christmas like we did. Man my brother can cook. All your goodies sound divine, even the brussel sprouts.

    4:28 PM, January 01, 2008  
    Blogger amusing wrote in a love letter...

    Hibernating, eh? zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...
    oh, and only you would have an animated Red Balloon wandering through your house.

    5:09 PM, January 02, 2008  
    Blogger Nancy Dancehall wrote in a love letter...

    I believe it, Meno. I have a short clip of the balloon that I might post. It doesn't float anymore. I miss it. Though we now have Son of Red Balloon.
    (And the sprouts WERE good).

    It went quite well, Ir. And thank you. It was most disconcerting to find the Halloween candy.

    I know, Emily. I wish I could be there for it, as sous chef. Hell, as kitchen slop girl. Whatever, it's TUSCANY.

    Happy New Year, Bud! The 'rents were wonderful and I miss them now.

    Enhanced by sunpatches, eh Patches?

    Give me your address, Lynn, I'll cook for you. *s*

    Yes, Jo, they were. Can ya believe it? I think there was a message there. Did your mom freak out about Eagle?

    I almost, ALLLLmost, picked up little chef hats at a party store, DMG. But my mom was there and she would have insisted on paying, and, well...

    Happy New Year, Cheesy! Come back, I'll re-create the meal!!

    It is SUCH a good book, Clowncar. I haven't gotten to the round table yet. The Shining mallet scene didn't fly with me; he would have been too trained in the art of protecting his thoughts, and the hotel was too wounded at that point to really do something that extreme.
    Oh, and I've picked up Gentlemen of the Road. I'm sure you're reading it. What do you think? Oh, and should I tell everyone the news...? *g*

    Aw, thanks Maggie. It was a good visit. Sounds like you had a good time this year too with the right bit of family. *g*

    Yup. I'd sleep like a bear through this depressing grey if I could. Everyone needs a wandering red balloon to lighten their spirits.

    12:32 AM, January 04, 2008  

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