raybear: (red)
My general rule for myself (and many others), is that wearing button-down shirts requires an undershirt. There are, of course, exceptions, usually having to do with seasonal and geographical locations (e.g. a short sleeve casual shirt in the summer), but like I said, it's a rule. The new personal exception is the plaid cowboy snap shirt. It happened on accident one Saturday morning, when I just put it on to run out to the store or walk the dog, or some event that didn't require me caring, and then I saw myself in the mirror with the open collar and the chest hair revealed and decided this is a look I enjoy. And the physiological symbol of certain male bodies corresponds well in a way that doesn't so much sync with my image of a nice dress shirt in an office environment.

My shirt could use some ironing though.

On Friday I had brunch with [livejournal.com profile] drinkasyoupour and because she is a therapist as well as my good friend, I of course shared some of my recent therapist thoughts and revelations and ponderings. After we ate and decided to go to Andersonville to poke around a little, I knew in my gut we would see him on the street or in a store. Sure enough, as we were waiting to cross Balmoral, he drove by us. I shrieked a little and told her about it, and my premonition, then she had to go and say, "damn, I wish I had seen him when he drove past." Because he of course ended up parking half a block away and was feeding the meter and appeared to be walking toward us and I totally panicked and made us duck into the bakery. Except we were mistaken, he never came our way. We left and went to buy shoes. I joked about my panicking. Then on the way to the bookstore, we passed him on the sidewalk. Of course. I didn't force us to avert ourselves this time, we passed and made eye contact and did the half-nod/smile thing. Its all ridiculously silly, both at the time and now, recounting it, but also valid because it is uncommon to have an intensely intimate relationship that happens in a controlled bubble and barely includes a handshake. DAYP helpfully pointed out, that being on the other end of the therapist seeing the client in public isn't always necessarily easy either.

That night I went to the reading at the Chopin Theatre alone and struck up a random conversation with a quirky stranger. It put me in a good mood, to interact with someone who foregoes all the boring trappings of small talk and instead starts conversations with things like: "Do you wear your glasses all the time?" Um, except for when I sleep. "Do you own contacts?" Yes, but I don't wear them all the time. "Oh, because there's this weekly dodgeball game in wicker park that's really fun and you should do....but sometimes glasses get broken, so you don't wear them." After the reading I met up with DYA and some friends and acquaintances at a gallery and then a drink and had a good time discussing movie adaptations of novels, Sharon Stone, quitting things, rock band rivalries that involve guerilla vandalism, and earl grey cigarettes.

Yesterday was a run in the rain, writing group, then meeting up with my former mentor for wine downtown. I took her to Bin 36 which was sort of like eating inside a Crate & Barrel and the cheese was extremely overpriced given the portion size, but the wine was only moderately overpriced and worth it because you could get all these flights. I would definitely return. And I am in love with their Pomelo Suvignon Blanc. I am happy to have found sufficient options for white wines this summer. The conversation included losing large chunks of time to depression, stage zero cervical cancer, brain tumors that are really "mexican worms", screenplays, making a living writing, bad book reviews, choosing which novel to write, and the familial impact of your mother dating a sex offender. She didn't disapprove of me shelving my novel and I even broke my vow and talked about the details of my new novel and she was intrigued. (Oh yeah, have I mentioned I'm starting a new novel?) She was thrilled by the writing retreat we're doing in Ojai. And she gave me a specific editor of a well-known literary journal to whom I should submit a story, with permission to also use her name in the letter. Sight-unseen of what this story is, just on faith of having read my other work. Oh yeah, this was part of the purpose of going to grad school. The connections. Also, to find mentors who challenge but also have faith in you. Also, to meet writers who are making it work and we can just drink and talk about existing in the world together. It was good to be reminded of it all.

By the time I came home last night, I was perfectly sated in regards to all my social time and extroversion. Besides, I've been itching to finally do some writing. See, on Thursday night, on the train ride home, I managed to conceive an entire new novel -- main character, secondary characters, plot, ending and all. I'm not entirely sure about POV and structure yet, but that can come. I'm mostly just happy to not be loathing the thought of tackling it, the way I have been so extremely disinclined for the past year. Today was going to involve some wandering, some sitting, some writing. But now it's raining and I'm less interested in just hitting the street and finding a place to land, especially since I left my umbrella at a friend's house. But who knows, I might do it anyway. My shirt and chest hair deserve it.
raybear: (Default)
I went running this morning, the second time this week, I've been going about twice a week in the past two weeks. I'd like to get up to three times a week, but hey, I'll take two. It's two more than zero, which I was doing before. I've taken SAMe every morning since February 22nd, which means its been about a month. I swallow 400 mg every morning, and sometimes on an afternoon when going to work seems hard, I take another 200 mg. Today, I took the extra 200 mg in the mid-morning. I'm doing a lot, I'm doing better, but sometimes I catch myself in the lie -- that even though I tell myself it's about managing and coping, parts of me still think its about curing. So I get down on myself when its still there. I know lots of things, that is different from feeling them, believing them.

There's a difference though, which is that I'm actually feeling separate emotions, not just a grey white-noise of numbness over all things. I am sometimes gentle with myself. I'll keep at it.

Last night I started to really put together all the organizational bits and pieces of the writer's retreat packet and I'm so jazzed about this, I can hardly contain myself. I want to send out the packet RIGHT NOW, but I'm still waiting on parts from other people. Including, um, myself. I did write up my seminar description, but I want to revise parts of the story I'm sending in too. So. Excited. I get all buzzy and jumpy and tingly. Writing about it makes me think about it and I'm feeling it again.

Yesterday while doing work up in Evanston, I stopped by the inferior branch of Binny's (it's smaller and mostly seems to deal in hard liquors), which was perfect for being inferior because the random wine with which I am in love (and also is currently on sale) was fully stocked and I bought two more bottles, one to share at the writing retreat. I wrote about it already, the Dehesa Gago 2005. The other week, I also bought the Dehesa Gago 2003 and a white wine, Baso, also by my new winemaker boyfriend, Telmo Rodriguez. I was ready to live in sin with him and birth all his babies, all based on his skills alone, but then I googled him and check it out:

He would be easy to love.

I just realized my brunch tomorrow is a birthday brunch, so I should go get a card and maybe a gift. It's friday, so I'm wearing jeans and a tight t-shirt that says "Don't Get Caulky". And there's a picture of a caulking gun.
raybear: (chik-fil-a)
I have been buying a lot of wine. It's sort of ridiculous. I also bought my first bottle which required me affix a label and write "do not drink until at least 2008". I don't really have a proper cellar, but I think the back dark corner of my pantry will suffice. Maybe. I might look into buidling a mini-cellar in the basement. We'll see how long the obsession lasts, or rather the minor mania attached.

I am still obsessed with bordeaux from st. emilion. In fact, the You-Must-Wait bottle is one of those. I have another one and a half I can drink sooner. The half bottle isn't opened -- it's an actual half (demi) bottle. I'm sort of obsessed with those too. I also have a half bottle of a sauvignon blanc, a half bottle of sauternes, and a half bottle of a sauternes-esque newish wine. I also have more regular bottles, two california wines, a zinfandel and a petite sirah, which is strange for me, as I am usually a french snob. So yeah. I have been buying a lot of wine. Especially considering I am the only person in the house drinking it. Maybe I should invite people over more often. Hey, now you know I will serve you good wine.

Last weekend I was drinking a different bordeaux -- 2003 Chateau Puygueraud. It was ok. I don't remember anything remarkable about it. Which means I will probably forget about it and buy it again. No, hopefully not, that's why I'm writing all this down, right? To prevent that?

And I am currently drinking this spanish wine that I'm totally in love with: 2005 Dehesa Gago (from the Toro region). It goes POW in the beginning, all dark and fruity, practically effervescent, then it disappears (where does it go?), but then it comes back in your mouth and has a dry finish. And then you want another sip. And another. And another. Which is dangerous, cause this wine is 14% alcohol, a little higher than usual. I want to buy another bottle to take with me to Ojai next month.

Oh yeah, I'm going to Ojai next month. For a weekend writing retreat. I am super psyched. It will be 72 hours with 4 of my favorite writers (my antioch clan) in two adjoining hotel rooms with kitchenettes, with breaks to swim in the pool and look at the mountains. I should have done this in early February. Next year. I will go somewhere sunny and relaxing and creative in the darkest part of the year, both weather and mood-wise.

Hello, March, you are a month I never remember because I'm so busy recovering after everything sucking for so long. Welcome!

I wrote at work tonight. Like creative writing. That is rare. Now I'm all hyper.

If I was a torch singer, I would roll around on the piano at the end of the night and close out my set with "One For My Baby." But only if I could sound like Dianne Reeves while doing it.

Oh, and I think I've decided on going to San Francisco at the end of June for a week-plus, in honor of my birthday.

Oh! Oh! And this is my new user icon that I made from a photo by [livejournal.com profile] broqued. From our adventure with [livejournal.com profile] keetbabe and [livejournal.com profile] dommeyourass up to Racine, Wisconsin, to eat the world's best chicken sandwich. And then shopping at a department store's 85% clearance sale. B and I got matching sweaters! We haven't appeared in public together yet. I never did write about that. I think because that weekend was the ice storm and seeing Babel and the Oscars and I just never got around to it.

I will stop this entry before I embarass myself...more.
raybear: (Default)
The problem with eating good cheese and apples for breakfast is the association makes me want wine and it's just too early for that if I'm going to get anything done today. I'm eating these things because 1) it is delicious, duh, and 2) for some reason even the thought of making toast (which much be done on the oven with the broiler) feels like too much work this morning. I just want to insert the food into my mouth.

I'm attempting to return a bottle of wine to the store today because it was corked. This is the first time I have experienced it and even though I sort of knew it was happening while I was opening it, not just after smelling/tasting it, I still kept going thinking, hmmm, maybe it's just a musty wine? Cause it's so old, going all the way back to....2003? It wasn't very tasty, or at least the tastiness had some funk on top of it, but it also wasn't as vile as I imagined corked wine to taste.

I made another playlist. Its Friday. Its time for a little deathmatch. I'm one of the few people who gets misty-eyed listening to these songs, because it makes me miss [livejournal.com profile] thebrownhornet like a mtherfcker. Though I bet Cappadonna cries too. But for different reasons.
raybear: (red)
I buy most of my bottles of wine blind, or with only a few keywords to guide me (a year, a valley, a country), and then I come home and google the hell out of the label to learn about them.

I am drinking a 2002 syrah from Mission Hill winery which is in, get this, Canada. I didn't even know. I mean, sure, there are wineries everywhere, but that doesn't mean they are making bottles that deserve to be shipped out and sold to other cities and drunk by people like me, who have a choice in the matter. (I had this wine at the Amana colonies in Iowa that I nearly choked on, which made me think about how location of a commune building is important if you are going to be self-sufficient and what your goals are for said commune and how mine would need goats for cheese and hills for vines. Anyway....) The guy who owns Mission Hill also owns Mike's Hard Lemonade and he took all his money from that and made a gorgeous building and winery that produces wines that supposedly don't live up to the grandeur, according to some articles I read. But this wine I'm drinking is from the "Select Lot Collection" and I'm pretty sure it peaked. I say this only because I bought it for like 60% off at Binny's and when I looked it up online, they are no longer carrying it at the winery. But, maybe it's not peaked, maybe it's peaking with only moments left, because it's quite good. It's very grapey in a way that wine usually isn't (unless it gerwuzhiqrepqrhwhatever) and is more tart than acidic. I would be tempted to buy another bottle if it were to be drunk quickly (i.e. in the next few months), given the low price I found it at, but I'm not going to bust myself out to get to Binny's to make sure I get the last few bottles.

Speaking of syrahs, I had a Smoking Loon syrah at a party over the weekend and I didn't hate it. This is good news, I like being able to find wines I can somewhat enjoy that are available in regular grocery stores. Of course, after taking a sip, I promptly opened up the spanish syrah I brought and drank that instead. But still. Also, I can't remember a damn thing about the details of that wine other than that I got it Treasure Island for $9.99. Because I took it straight to a party and didn't have time to come home and google it.
raybear: (Default)
January is usually a pretty introspective month for me. I mean that word neutrally, as well as the extreme versions that can come with it, whether the introspection leads to major life changes (breaking up, starting new relationships, starting new jobs, quitting jobs, etc.) or whether it leads to major depression or whether I'm just fcking sick and I have to lie around on the couch for days (or weeks) on end and look within to my cellular health. This year is no different, though it's a milder version, I just feel more introverted. Which is highly conducive to the schedule I'm keeping.

life, drinking during the day, why I should live in southern france )

May 2010

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