You are currently browsing the monthly archive for January 2013.

The squirrels around here are obese, still November 1st plump and ready for hibernation. Except whatever trigger they are waiting for hasn’t happened, for the second winter in a row it has been easy living with no real need to hide out and sleep. So they ate all of that in preparation for something that never arrived. I wonder how many generations of squirrels it will take before they lose the ability to hibernate and all die in a bitter cold winter.

I wonder if all animals hibernated at some point. Most of the shining, glittering, stunning women I know have spent at least a week or two this month staring out the window and taking long deep breaths. Waiting for a sense of rest that comes with a great deep sleep.

I took a long walk outside yesterday because I could with comfort. Still, I haven’t hibernated yet.

Plan Your Run
Run Your Plan
Fuck That Shit.

Workout & exercise stuff ahead…

I have a goal between now and the end of February, so much of a goal that I have an insane, color-coded excel sheet to help me keep track of how I am doing and trying to take on the goal in manageable bites.

It is doable, even pleasantly sized at the moment but it won’t take many days of missing things to make it enormous and out of reach quickly. Today, I needed to bike and walk/run. I needed to do other stuff that related to my life first, but then I had “planned my run” for the afternoon.

I didn’t want it. Not even close. What I wanted was to shred every ab muscle I have (honestly, it is one of my favorite gym activities). So mainly what I did was shred muscle with a little biking thrown in to catch my breath every once in awhile. No time on the treadmill or the track (I do want to recoup that over the rest of the week).

I sat down at my computer to watch my bike numbers move a little on the excel sheet, and I felt a little bummed that I didn’t at least do something on the treadmill. Then I tried to scoot in the chair and my abs screamed at me … and I felt better.

This. My friends. Is why I don’t have nice things, but I can find day to day happiness.

My long-range goal gets booted over and over again for the sensation of the moment. I have a lot of day to day happiness.

I think about the neuro who had to tell us, “It isn’t if you take him off life support, it is when.” and what an awful way to start a day that must be – to clear the path like that for people you have never met before.

I think about phone calls, and hugs, and tears, and the ways that these wonderful men we knew rallied around us in these last hours. I think about my family and how much that day would be etched in our minds. I think of what happened afterwards but I try and keep that separate from the day John dies.

Like I said, the Saturday night was the only night I ever spent in the hospital. I got up about 3:30 and was hungry; I went down stairs to the vending machines and got some plain M&Ms. I was sliding in my sock feet in the elevator eating M&Ms and it was fine (wow, sometimes I realize how distorted my idea of “fine” can be). The neuro we only ever saw once said on Sunday morning, “the essence of who he was we lost sometime in the night”.

There are a lot of individual snap shots of people’s faces that I still carry with me, moments that are still completely clear today. There isn’t much to say in some ways. I was married in my 20s, he died 11 years ago. I am grateful for all of the days.

At first it was just the way it happened and now I rely and plan on it.

By January of 2002 John had logged months in hospitals over the previous year, weeks in the ICU, he was sporting a trial device which relied on electricity (via outlet or batteries) and the day to day definition of normal was an ambient level or orchestration and stress and insanity that I hope never to visit again.

So in the days that John died it went like this….

Day 1 – the transplant, the misdirection and disappearance of the cardio thorasic surgeon, and the relaying of the message “He got the heart, we don’t know what is happening.”

Day 2 – really, that was easy. It was the 1,000 yard stare and the kind of waiting that we were all really fucking exceptional at. Doctors came earlier and later than we expected, they told us nothing or tried to warn us of what was coming and we couldn’t hear it quite yet. We knew it was really really bad, but in a lot of ways it was just a day at the hospital. It was a Saturday, so it was tougher to email with friends who weren’t there.

The only strange thing – Saturday night was the only night I ever slept at the hospital through the whole thing. I am grateful that I did.

Mainly though, even as each year I work though all of it again, the second day is the rest day. The chaos is behind and the crushing hasn’t yet arrived. The second day has always just been a day.

Today I took my family to the park for an hour to play, we laughed and chased each other around. Today I took my family to the grocery store where it took a long time and I’m not sure we really bought food. Today I will go out to dinner with my 2nd husband while my son plays with his grandma. Today is just a day, it is a good day, it is a day that exists because of all the days that came before it. ALL of the days.

I still feel the suspense, even though the story played out 11 years ago. Turns out that if I still had a 2002 calendar lying around (Ansel Adams that year) I could reuse it this year because the days of the week are correct.

fuck that.

Eleven years ago today … I had unknowingly crossed into a world where John would never speak to me again. He was still alive, his body, some spirit maybe – at the beginning of the end. Maybe 11 years ago right this moment, some spirit. Maybe not. There is peace in thinking his spirit didn’t have to watch the next days play out.

I think of friends of long ago, the first that weren’t there but heard what we were afraid might be happening. Eleven years ago today. It is so laughable that the hope was there even for a moment. I’m grateful for a day of hope.

Penny in the air. and I know how it lands.

Ultimately I liked it, and my 4.5 yo son made it through with minimal damage and no parental editing. Still, is Jan 9 and I have only watched the episode three times so my views are not quite finalized.

They obviously are pulling out quite a long story line with Clara, which is fine and makes it fun. I am interested to see how they will sustain interest since they telegraphed it so early in (unlike, say, TheDoctorDonna). I hope someone has told them that the dying every episode wears thin quickly (see also: Rory, and Kenny from South Park). She’s cute, I like her.

I like the highly flirtatious nature of Clara and I will be happy to see that continue but I need to see how that enmeshes with River Song – or better yet, perhaps we will see them together. I like the moments where the Doctor is caught off guard.

Like many others, I was nervous about Matt Smith for a lot of reasons, and Tennant is still My Doctor – but I will say that for such a young man Smith can turn on the look of impossibly old and sad better than I would have imagined. Tennant can do “anger of the ages” well, but Smith has “I am soooooo old” down pat.

I can’t imagine Les Mis needs spoiler alerts- it seems the only possible new audience is the spouse/partner/now-old-enough-child of someone who was watching the stage production in the 80s and 90s. I saw it twice in Chicago, once very close in, and once from the balcony.

TL;DR version – it was good and you should watch it, IF you know it already.

First – the amazing stuff.
Eddie Redmayne as Marius. I never cared for the character of Marius in the show but Eddie is STUNNING in Empty Chairs and Empty Tables which totally makes up for him needing to make eyes at Cosette.

The opening sequence in the shipyard. A great way to hold to the awfulness of being a prisoner while doing something that could not have been effective in the stage show. Beautiful, moving, great opening.

Colm returning to play the Bishop. It was just lovely to hear his voice and see the passing of the torch.

Second – the thing I wanted that was unreasonable.
When I saw the first clips of it (which was the extended view) and saw Anne doing I Dreamed a Dream I burst into tears because she did such a great job nailing it. Still … and I know that I am being unreasonable here … I was over exposed to it or something because when the time came it didn’t quite deliver.

What I thought of a couple of times was the way Across The Universe and Glee have changed the entire dynamic of Beatles song I Want To Hold Your Hand … and how Anne was able to deliver a performance that was more raw than someone delivering it 6x/week on stage — but still … eh.

Finally, the place that it collapsed for me.
Every time Russell Crowe was on the screen. I just hit YouTube to see if there was some video documentation that Russell should have had this role. Actually what I found was this (boozed up?) version … and hell, if he’d shown up as the Elvis / Beatle version he sings here it would have helped.

Anyhow, I wish that Russell would have understood the dynamic between Javert and Valjean which he totally seemed to miss.

That was just a fun one to write … maybe waiting another day would have made sense but — eh. Who cares.