Put down your compass

(2003's 'You got me. I'm listening.' will provide a good deal of insight into the literal meaning of this very figurative entry. For a day or so, I'll move it back to the front page of the site, since despite the large span of time between them, these two entries dovetail.)Fans of a radio show will set the clocks of their lives by the broadcasts they care about; they will turn up the volume and lean in close to the speaker, so as not to miss any of the words.

Me, I've listened to this radio show before.


Lest we forget: life is so achingly fragile, and there are no second chances.

A week ago today was the fourth anniversary of my father's death. That morning, I asked myself the kind of question that defines the difference between adulthood and childhood: "If I had no more chances after today, what would be my greatest regret?"

For me, the answer was clear. Something about the day, the anniversary—something indefinable and pressing—meant that I spent that morning finally doing something about it. Actions that may or may not get written about here. It's too personal, and has ramifications on lives not my own. Even if I could write it, I am not sure that I should.

Today, after a crossword-and-cat-induced nap, we dressed and headed out for Indian food, at a restaurant in which we are regulars ("No bread tonight?") and came home to a message on the answering machine.

dignity check!

He was the "striped pajamas guy." I still don't know his name, nor did I, until today, know how long I'd seen him in the gym. He was a fixture, just someone that I saw a lot, and someone who put the weight racks through their paces.I spoke to him for the first time today. I brought my dumbbells to my bench at the back of the room, and looked over at the terrifying stack of weights on his bench. Note to self. Don't piss off the guys that bench over 300.

"I envy you that."

"Yeah, well, I've been off for a while. I'm capable of better. This bugs me."

"Funny, I've been saying that myself."

remember two things

I wondered where I'd be. I got the answer tonight; an answer that was nearly four years in coming. As usual, the answer wasn't what I expected.

It was less.

It was more.

shoes #1: welcome to the cult

I said I wouldn't become my mother, and that you would never find a rack of shoes in my closet and another set underneath my bed and another set of lesser-used shoes underneath the guest bed. I still say that. I think it's true; knowing a potential pitfall exists can sometimes help you avoid it.However, I skirted one pitfall only to discover another: the cult of Nordstrom. I get it, oh, I get it.

It was the damn makeup, see.

Back in September 2003, I wrote about my unexpected discovery of the goodness of Birkenstock, otherwise known as shoes that actually fit (the entry 'hippie sandal-wearing freaks'). Since then, my momentary $50 splurge on off-white Birks has proven to be one of the wisest $50 expenditures in my adult life. I knew I had unusual feet, but I figured I just wasn't trying hard enough to find shoes that worked for me.

Orion's gift

[For Christmas 2008 I have temporarily moved this entry from December 2005 back to the front page of domesticat.net.]