Getting Back to Things


Back to blogging, the sequel. This morning I took a quick walk out to the lake, it’s such a blue, gorgeous day, I couldn’t resist.

Though I should backtrack a little.

Last week, I was hurrying to cross the street before the light changed — don’t ever hurry to cross the street before the light changes — and I took a spill. A big, embarrassing spill. I scraped my knees and bruised them as well. It’s quite an attractive look.

Well, my right knee is still pretty banged up, and the scrape reminds me it’s there every time I flex. It’s not the most convenient place for a scrape, I guess we can all agree.

Anyway, I’ve been wanting to take a quick walk for a few days now, since I’m used to getting physical activity, and it’s frustrating to have to sit around. So I went.

There were some stairs that were probably a little less comfortable than they could have been, and on the way back, I ended up taking the ramp down to give the knee a bit of a break, but the whole excursion was worth it, just to see the morning sun reflecting off of the water.

I should have brought my sunglasses. It was pretty bright.

Overall, though, my knee held up. It stings a bit now, sure, but it hurts less today than it did yesterday, and I’ll bet it will hurt even less tomorrow. Healing is a cool thing.

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When Reading a book becomes more of an accomplishment than writing one…


Well, it’s official. I can read. I finished George Orwell’s masterpiece, 1984, yesterday. It was an amazingly prescient book, and I’m not sure that certain politicians and wealthy political string-pullers didn’t use it as a template.

Reading it electronically, which I thought might feel odd given the age of the book, wasn’t strange at all, which either speaks to the adjustment to technology or the idea of reader experience put into the ereader itself. Either way, I think anything can be read electronically now. The virtual gates have been lowered.

My next book is a paperback, I’ve had it for ages, and just haven’t gotten to read it, as excited as I was about it when it came out. So we’ll see how the experience differs. I suspect more arm fatigue with the paperback, but we’ll see.

I’m thinking of doing full reviews of the books, and I’ll keep you posted on that front. But it’s nice to know that the reader in you never goes away, no matter how neglected she might be.

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I’m WAAAAAYY too Excited about ‘Orange is the New Black’


I am so giddy with excitement I can barely type. I’m going to prison, you guys! But don’t worry, I’m only visiting some friends who insist that “Orange is the New Black.” Yup, it’s back, and I don’t think that anyone should be this excited over a TV show.

Except maybe “Doctor Who.”

And “Orphan Black.” And, of course, OITNB. Who am I kidding? If you watched the first season, you’re likely as excited as I am.

We get to see what all the inmates at the fictional Litchfield have been up to since we saw them last. And the most glorious part of all is we can find out as quickly or as slowly as we like. I wish I could say I wasn’t going to binge like a person who’s sworn off sugar suddenly in a land made up entirely of FoodLikeCake’s recipes (and what a glorious world that would be).

But that’s the beauty of Netflix’s system of putting up the whole season at a time. When those credits roll, the next episode is fair game.

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Putting the Period in Period Drama


I have been obsessed with period dramas recently. British period dramas (though that might be a bit redundant. Can something be a bit redundant? Hmm).

I have absolutely no idea why. I’m not a person with a shiny nostalgia for the days long past. I know well enough–mostly from watching period dramas, I guess–that not everyone was the lady in the fancy clothes imported from France. And even she had her constraints, not the least of which was her corset.

But still, there’s something about them, something about opening a television-sized window into the past, thinking about the day-to-day lives of people from a hundred years ago as people, not as hazy lines of paint in the works of the impressionists.

It’s a way of remembering that, all the way along, people have simply been people. They were not bustles or feather-and-ribbon-laden hats. They were not horse-drawn carriages or cobbled streets.

They were simply people. As are we.

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Sunday Was for the Birds


The other day was gorgeous, and I went to the lakefront, where I sat and watched the boats and the birds. There was a bit of a breeze, and the temperature dipped when the huge, fluffy clouds covered the sun.

I got caught up in the seagulls as they flapped awkwardly, looking like gangly teenagers with too-long-limbs, then suddenly transforming into things of grace as they soared. But the best part was keeping an eye on a bird until it circled, then suddenly plunged toward the surface of the water.

Most of the time, they’d emerge, a flash of silver in their beaks until, in a second, it was gone.

Now and again, they’d pull up right before they hit the water, arcing back toward the sky or plopping down and bobbing with the waves. I couldn’t be sure they didn’t know I was watching, that they weren’t, perhaps, giving me a show as they got their dinner.

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Give it a Rest, R


It might be a strange pick for a Monday, but I’m choosing “rest” for R. It’s something we neglect, it’s something we put off, and it’s something we all need to keep doing what we need to do.

Yesterday, I did nearly nothing. I didn’t really work on my novel. I didn’t blog. I watched the “Cloneversation,” the pre-season two “Orphan Black” special, followed by the stunning premiere, with the intention of getting on with it afterward.

Afterward never came.

I felt as though I was sitting on a sofa made of molasses, my hand powerless over the on/off button on the remote. I caught up on some shows sitting on my DVR. And then I started watching a marathon of “Lindsay.” You know, the “docu-series” about Lindsay Lohan. I was a slug and it felt…


I can’t say that today I’m perfectly energized, because some Monday mornings are just like that and I’ve stopped with the cheat-code of alertness, caffeine, but I do have more space in my brain today. My mind was moving boxes while I watched Lindsay sorting through hers. No really. I think half the series is her unpacking. Or packing. Whichever.

When it’s your own brain that stops you dead, it’s only polite to ask it why. It’s probably telling you, you need to rest.

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Ellen Gently Rocked the Oscars


So I guess I enjoyed the Oscars. I say “I guess,” because, for the first time in years, I watched them from beginning to end (granted, with some use of the fast-forward button. It was getting late), despite telling myself, repeatedly, to go to bed.

I mean, Ellen ordered pizza. I had to see if anyone was going to eat it. And there was the picture that broke Twitter. Nothing, itself, was epic (except, well, the musical performances, more below), but it all added up to entertaining.

Ellen kept the show moving and still brought humor even to small moments, and without the fussy production numbers, the musical guests carried that aspect of the show. Which, when you think about it, makes sense, they should.

Pharrell’s “Happy,” had me grinning enough to make me sad for myself that the performance was the high point of my day. In fact, I don’t usually add links to my Bits posts, but because it’s Monday, and because everyone can use a little happiness, here’s the video. Actually that page has all of them. Make sure to see Pink’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” which was incredible, and Idina Menzel singing the Oscar-winning “Let it Go.” There’s a reason that woman is a Broadway fixture.

Overall, it just had a more human feel to it this year. There was none of that usual sense that the show was broadcast from Mount Olympus, brought to us by favor of the gods. It was just fun. And that’s all Ellen.

All I Want Is to Be Lazy


Do you ever have one of those days when all you want is to sit on the couch, a marathon of shows or movies ahead of you, knowing that the only place you need to go is the kitchen?

Yeah, well, today is not one of those days. I kind of wish it were, though.

But it’s not.

Instead, it’s got a to-do list that gets longer every time I scratch something off of it. I’m not an expert in to-do lists, but I thought that they were supposed to get shorter the more you do. Not at this rate.

Nope, the soonest I can have a lazy day is Sunday, though when you think about it, Sunday’s really the prototype for days like that. What I wouldn’t give for another “House of Cards” run of episode after episode, but I did that already, and Orange is the New Black doesn’t come back until June. Everything else is miserly, giving us one measly episode at a time.

I need a new series on Netflix, that’s what I need. I’m open to suggestions.

Oh wait, right. My to-do list. Still, if you have any ideas…you know. In case.

I Love Lucy was a Long Time Ago


The other day, I woke up far too early to get up, but much too alert to go back to sleep. So I turned on the TV to find an episode of “I Love Lucy.”


The Ricardos and the Mertzes sat together in that iconic living room, listening to a beautiful radio, Bakelite by the look of it. One of the questions was about the last state to be admitted into the Union.

It was Arizona. Think about that. Back then, in the early days of the Lucy looniness, before the chocolate conveyor belt and weeks after Vitameatavegamin, Arizona was a baby state, only admitted in 1912, not yet dreaming of what was to come.

Then Lucy said she thought there were 46 states, and covered her embarrassment by saying she must have forgotten about Alaska and Hawaii, which was funny to them and not to us, because, of course, those states wouldn’t be admitted for seven more years. Such a strange thought.

Lucy, in that black-and-white living room, with the love seat sofa and the curtains in the background, only had 48 states. That we have 50 seems so immutable, so permanent.

But even these things change.

Is It Anything But Winter Yet?


Everything looks icy today. The ground, the lake, the sky; it’s all a uniform shade of dull white, the kind with enough gray in it to make it heavy.

It’s been a long winter, and there is yet more to go still. I’m told the groundhog saw his shadow. I don’t think we needed his prognostication.

After weeks and weeks and weeks of it, it awakens something in you, something ancient beyond the humanity of us, something that makes you want to take to a soft bed with a pile of blankets and a television loud enough to drown out the wind.