Sunday, March 30, 2008

With Warmth Comes Tornadoes.

Spring Fever. The mind awakens from hibernation and in a dizzy-frenzy tries catch up to the color and noise that blooms indiscriminately before it. Life. Like Dorothy in Oz when suddenly everything is in Technicolor. How she must have felt to go back to the black & white after skipping down that yellow brick road, elbows crooked with strangers in masks, facing color like a head out an open window.

They don't talk about that part. Its all happy endings with Auntie Em. Sure she's glad to be home at first- safe, warm, asleep in her own bed. Naivety lost, but the sweetness of innocence intact. But that all melts into the gray.

My spring-self is feeling rather like Kansas after the return trip. Black & white swarming into my awake-but-gray matter. How un-Spring. I don't see any fever there. This is no lovely way to burn.

Or is it?

There is still art to be had in the unexpected, in the black & white. I put a roll of black & white film in my camera on accident and found that a pack of Koi arching the surface of an algae-toned pond look better that way once captured in still. Spring has turned into a roll of the wrong film, but beauty has a mind of its own and can always find a way out.

I got wrapped up in Spring Fever. The blush of warmth; the sneak peek of soft, sweet pink buds crept in like the first glass of wine of a night sure to end well. Window shopping eyes filled with the reflection of big brushes of bright fashion life swept up off the floor of designer palates. How they rushed into my wickedly fit to be tied wardrobe and begged to spring forth into the temperate city life. I wore the same green sweater in what felt like a Beatles lyric - eight days a week. It seemed my restlessness found solace in these shallow purchases.

Alas, like the weather itself, it did not find roots, and back to Kansas I could feel myself shrink beneath my gray coat as the city swept under a cold front- again. A frown as frigid as the northern wind that cruised with such casual cruelty over me. Spring, a temerarious season at best, not unlike myself. It seems my need for the vernal -- measured fittingly by its duality holding all and no authority as I stumble blindly into greenness -- never-minding my original desire for true heat.

Heat. I'm looking for heat. Dorothy may have ended up in Oz on accident, but she made the best of it. I maybe in the midst of a black & white Spring, but Summer beckons, and after Spring Fever comes Summer Fling.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Notes on a slip

Its easy to be someone else behind closed doors.
Well, it used to be.
Now its Nina Simone on repeat just above audible so as not to wake the roommates.
White slips and red lipstick that no one sees but me.
Tiptoes in black heels that still make the floors creep so loud its like the quick, sharp feel of an ice cream headache.
Its too late to make this much noise-
At least all by myself.
She said I snap at everyone so much lately maybe I should live alone.
Alone. Earphones on all the time.
Alarmingly disalarmed, seeking solace in my lonely hostility.
Such malevolence.
Maybe I find a rush in bridled cruelty.
The same secret blood-race from wearing red heels standing on a chair looking through the tattered reflection before me.
(The chair is required. My mirrors- like my expectations- are set too high.)
I'm not supposed to engage in such high blood pressure.
It could kill me.
I could fall off that ornate, antique chair.
I could forget that I'm not alone.
Remember that nothing is really behind closed doors.
Its no secret that my slip is showing.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The fruits of my labor.

I am at work. That much it true, but my thoughts are elsewhere entirely. A black scarf fits snug around my neck in an attempt to create mock-warmth, as I know it is Spring somewhere (just not today in Washington and certainly not in this cubicle). Earphones recently purchased at Radioshack at the insistence of a young man who, as a selling point said, "I got the same ones and, I know I'm not sup'sed to say this, but... they're the shit," sit equally as snug in my ears (and evoke far more heat through the help of Modest Mouse). I nibble aimlessly on nut granola that I'm supposed to save for lunch (to mix spiritedly with yogurt and assorted fruit).

Ah, fruit. Today I brought an apple, but am reminded upon arrival that this is a fruitless task. Tuesday. Fruit Delivery Day at the office. An event created no doubt to increase moral in the world of corporate America. Do not think my jaded sense of self implies un-appreciation for free produce.

Pause for a moment as I write to smile at no one- Irony rears its lovely head in the form of a song called "The Fruit That Ate Itself"- so far March has been implicated in several trials of the most ironic persuasion!

It appears last week's sadly neglected find- a too-ripe pear- has met its demise in my desk drawer; right next to one obligatory work toothbrush, one small paring knife (or pearing knife, or is that trying to be too witty?) from my home collection smuggled into the office to cut my daily allowance of motley fruit, and one tin of Rosebud Salve.

Mmmm... may the author pause again for lip balm application. Satisfied, I return.

I consider eating the Bosc anyway, but decide against it, and make my way to the kitchen to scrounge for remaining fruit-gratis. As expected, all that remains on the cold, metallic table (usually shared only by a large pack of Indian-American IT personage) is a sad combination of undesirables- Untouchables in India, if you want a theme here: a lone banana (bleck), a couple of decrepit grapes and a baker's dozen apples of various size and disposition. Blast. I missed the kiwi. Sometimes we get a spare avocado thrown in. I'm not sure why, although it is a fruit. Then again, so is a tomato, and an eggplant, but we don't get those.

I digress...

It is not these scattered remains, picked over by vultures like a carcass in the desert, that catch my eye initially, however. It is the khaki-colored Carhart-clad legs poking out from beneath the sink that strike me as odd. I tilt my head and make a face as a John Goodman circa Raising Arizona look-a-like smiles into my confusion and mumbles something inaudible as I begin to refill my water bottle from the water filter across the way.

A grunted "huh?" bellows out from under the sink where Carhart Man is replacing wires on a new dishwasher.

"Gail" replies, "Nuthin, I was talkin' to this lovely lady here."

I smile coyly, without trying to impress, and pervade the apples with a menacing glance as Carhart slips from beneath the sink and his steadfast work to peak a glance at said "lovely lady." He nods and wrinkles his mouth like an upside-down shoulder shrug as if to say, "yeah, she's alright, not my type, but alright." I take note of this and laugh internally.

Then, from the sky, or heaven, or some distant neighbor's party we are all not invited to, a clear and audible ding dong resounds through the kitchen. A doorbell. We look to each other for assistance. I suggest, "Is there a doorbell in the dishwasher?"

"Gail" scuffs, "I was gonna ask you about it. I didn't know there was doorbells in offices," a grin erupting on his moon-face.

The silence is deafening as we all contemplate the possibilities of the doorbell. I shrug and walk to the apples, picking a small, but seemingly tasty one. I read the sticker's bright proclamation of "Jazz" as I depart the kitchen, and slam into a chair making a metal rattle echo through the small kitchen and into Carhart's direct hearing path as he is back under the sink at this point. I shrink out apologetically and hear him screech, "What was that?!" in a tone that suggests he has still not recovered from the doorbell incident and the philosophical debate that resonates in his head louder than the sound of metal on tile floor.

His heavy sigh-reply at "Gail's" explanation makes me think, Perhaps the fruits of his labor are heavier than mine.

Yet... here I am, still thinking about doorbells akin to Chicken Little. He's probably long-solved today's riddle and moved on to install a dishwasher in a place where doorbells actually belong.