Saturday, February 25, 2006

Kite Runner

It is Saturday and I have finished The Kite Runner. It's the best book I've read in a while. I learned things about Afghanistan I never really knew before.

I worked a little today on the new Caffeine Destiny, which is going online in the middle of March. I'm excited about it.

If you have ever wondered if they make scented candles that smell like Chai tea, I can tell you that they do! I bought three Chai tea scented candles yesterday.

I planted two Oriental poppies in front of the house today. I guess it is not too early to plant perennials.

This summer I am going to plant garlic from The Terretorial Seed Company and dahlias from somewhere else.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


Max is working on making a giant peanut out of clay. It's the visual for his school project, a report on George Washington Carver. Carver invented peanut butter!

I was observed today in one of my classes. It went fine and I'm glad it's over! We are talking about rhetorical analysis these days.

Olena Davis is reading here in March!

These days I notice bare trees with many birds congregating in them. I know robins don't migrate for the winter, but they seem to be returning from somewhere .

The two green canaries that I saw outside last summer a few times are still around. Last summer when I saw them I figured they had escaped from someone's cage and would not survive out of the cage for long. But this afternoon I saw them again. They were on a lawn with about fifteen robins. I called Michael and said, "the canaries are still alive!"

It seemed a hopeful sign.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Random Thoughts

I have graded all those papers! My brain is slightly underfunctional at the moment, but the grading has been completed!

Barbara Guest died.

It is supposed to get super super cold here tonight but no snow.

I am going to a yoga class tomorrow I think.

I have no idea what to make for dinner but I'm trying really hard not to go to Taco Bell.

I am listening to Stan Getz.

Apparently there has been some massive explosion on "All My Children". Amy and I have no idea what has happened, we shouldn't even care we haven't watched in ages, and yet ... we care. We must write the show producers to say: please don't let Erica's hair get messed up! Do what you like with her 156th husband, but please, SAVE THE HAIR!!!

I don't teach tomorrow because of President's Day. My kids, however, have school.


Sunday, February 12, 2006

Sunday Night

It's Sunday and it seems I have quite a bit of grading coming my way this week. What better reason to blog!

The Girl Scout cookies have arrived and we have 107 boxes in our house right now. More accurately, we have 103 unopened boxes and four opened ones. I love the thin mints.

I went to a yoga class today. I haven't been in a yoga class since the one I took for about two weeks with Zanni when we were at PSU. The PSU one had about forty students I think. Today's class had four students. I really liked it.

Max got a baseball helmet and a bat and balls today. He's getting ready for Little League.

New York City has more snow than they've ever had!

Caffeine Destiny is closed to submissions right now. I made a note of it on the web site. And I set the submission email to autoresponse, so if people send things to that email they get an automated "we are not reading submissions right now" email. I need to get through winter term before I can start reading submissions again. The new issues gos online in late February or early March.

I finished The Birth of Venus. It was alright, but I can't say I'd wholeheartedly recommend it.

I can, however, recommend In The Absent Everyday by Tsering Wangma Dhompa. I have been reading it this weekend.

Full moon tonight. I am going to go get in the hot tub now and look at it.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Spring is Like a Perhaps Hand

The Grammys start in fifteen minutes, and I promised Laura I would watch some of them with her.

I am reading The Art of Describing by Svetlana Alpers. Mark Doty referred to it in his book and I have heard it mentioned in a few other places. It is about 17th century Dutch Art. The copy I have is used and highlighted in yellow - no doubt it belonged to a student in some Art history class somewhere. It's nice to read it and know I don't have to highlight - I can just enjoy. It seems to be saying something about the difference between Italian Renaissance painters and the Dutch painters - how they were written about and what the painters thought about their painting. But I have just started it.

Yes spring is making noise - little throat-clearing noises - but nonetheless noise! Crocus are blooming and daffodils, while not blooming, are definitely taller than they were a few weeks ago. We have had a respite from the rain.

Last night I had one of my classes listen to three different versions of the song "Satisfaction" (thankfully the Britney Spears version was not one of them). I put them in groups and had them talk about the differences. It was a way to start talking about analysis - I worried they would think it was a strange thing to do, but they really seemed to get into it.

I started a poem today.

Here comes Laura, up the stairs! Two minutes until Grammy time! How many of the artists will be ones I actually listen to?

Here's the e.e. cummings poem:
Spring is like a perhaps hand
(which comes carefully
out of Nowhere)arranging
a window,into which people look(while
people stare
arranging and changing placing
carefully there a strange
thing and a known thing here)and

changing everything carefully

spring is like a perhaps
Hand in a window
(carefully to
and fro moving New and
Old things,while
people stare carefully
moving a perhaps
fraction of flower here placing
an inch of air there)and

without breaking anything.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Sunday Morning

Today is Michael's birthday. We are going to see the Fantasticks at Portland Center Stage - it's the last performance.

Today is also Christopher Guest's birthday, as well as William Burroughs. So Michael is in good company.

Holly tried to convince us last night that Brokeback Mountain is a great movie. I haven't seen it. I do know it's taken from a short story written by a woman, and the screenplay was written by a straight couple. Would the script be any different if a gay man had written it? I don't know.

I made a cherry pie for Michael's birthday.

We have an addition to our gnome family. He carries a lantern. Some myths say that gnomes roam at night and during the day turn into toads; other myths say sunlight turns them into stone.

The word gnome derives from the Greek gnosis, meaning knowledge. Some say gnomes hoarded knowledge like treasure.

Others just like how they look in the garden.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Groundhog Where Is Thy Shadow?

He saw it. Six more weeks.

But the daffodils are coming up! It's time to prune the roses. Who put that groundhog in charge anyway?

Last night I read Still Life With Oysters and Lemons: On Objects and Intimacy by Mark Doty. It's a short little book, but it's really beauifully written. He talks about 17th Century Dutch Painting, and seeing and still life. I shall elaborate at a later time - class starts in a little over an hour.

I am now the proud owner of a red Kitchenaid tea kettle that whistles! It was just what my kitchen needed. And I was tired of heating water in the microwave every time I wanted a cup of tea.

We had more rain in Oregon in January than we've had in thirty years.

Tonight I'm signing up Max for Little League Baseball. Saturday we're going to the Fantastics!

Shall I tell you what I'm going to have for lunch? Would that be exciting? Ah, the life of a blogger.