Monday, August 31, 2009


Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not love, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not love, I am nothing.

And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not love, it profiteth me nothing.

Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Love never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.

For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.

But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.

When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a woman, I put away childish things.

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

I am going to need to think about this some more.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What the What?

At about quarter to midnight, I am roused from dreamless sleep by the sound of the buzzer. At the top of the stairs our neighbors' grown daughter is peering down as far as she can see.

I have some sort of vague recollection of sirens (?) maybe.

Anyway, Beth - or someone - is trying to get in, and I have to let them in. At the bottom of the stairs I nearly run into three firefighters who have just come up from the basement. In retrospect, it is an awkward encounter, although at the time I am barely cognizant of this fact (or anything for that matter). See, it has been SUPER. HOT. here lately. I have been resorting to drastic measures to fall asleep. Ice pops. No pants. Snuggling with the kitchen tiles and cool metal pots. So this night I have only just barely managed to drift off when the doorbell wakes me from my slumbers. "Did you ring the buzzer?" I demand of the bewildered firemen. They say no and try to maintain eye contact without looking at the rest of me. I am suddenly aware that I'm not wearing any shoes.

I mean pants.

I adjust the sheet (which, luckily, I have brought) around myself as though that is what I always wear when lounging about the apartment. Yeah, just your casual loungewear. They ask me if our power is out too. I say no, anyway, I have to get my sister. I step around them, bedsheet trailing behind and they tramp up the steps in full firefighting gear, axes, hats, heavy coats, boots... all in a day's work.

UGH. Turns out there is nobody at the door. Go figure. I catch up with the firefighters and try to explain how someone rang the bell and now there is nobody there and I just can't understand it. "Oh... maybe someone was confused and rang the wrong bell," one firefighter suggested helpfully.

We climb up the stairs. Three burly men and the oh so delightful Prancibald. On the second floor they file into the apartment that must have called them there in the first place. It is the recent grads who moved in just last week. They must have caught something on fire with their stove. I wouldn't put it past them. I mean, for RILL? One has her face covered in some sort of opaque cleansing substance and her eyes and mouth are making the same wide, round shape as she stands back from the doorway to allow the firefighters to enter.

"Seriously, get your life together," I think, scornfully, as I return to my apartment and shut the door. Yes, that is right, recent grads. The pantsless, barefooted wonder thinks you need to get your lives together.

Take that.

Saturday, August 22, 2009


My friend Ellie has spent the summer working on Long Island. I present you this recent online conversation.
E: my mom is coming!
i am waiting for her!

but she is taking so long! and i'm impatient

me: she will be there
make up a story

about a little girl who dropped her cloth doll in the ocean

and then a baby shark found it

E: you always have excellent advice.

If she says it, it is true.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Beauty is Healing

Raven, raven, raven
Oh, tell me why do you dress all in black?
I was so pupped out today after work. I didn't even go to dance class. Instead, I gathered up some special items... blueberries, rye bread, almond butter, an old journal from a couple years ago, that exceedingly impractical glass water bottle I've been lugging all over creation lately... and climbed to the park at the top of the hill to Just. Be. Still.

The air was cool and damp. I spread my belongings under a large oak tree with soft whispering leaves. And tried for a few moments to figure out if these droplets were rain or just very low-lying fog.

It didn't matter, I concluded and wrapped myself up in that brown woolen blanket and breathed and listened and felt and nestled. After a few minutes, I opened the old journal. It struck me, really, how much calmer, more centered I've become, even in the couple years since I wrote that. How much more clarity with which I see things, how much more comfortable I am being myself. What a broken little songbird I was...

As I was leaving, three adults and approximately five kids of different sizes and shades were in the process of launching a rocket driven by vinegar and baking powder or soda or whichever it is. I took my time gathering everything up, in hopes that I would get to witness the launch, but it was taking a long time and I didn't want to be a creeper.

I walked back down the hill with water sloshing around inside that great glass container with every step. As I opened the front door to our building, I noticed how it had grown dark. A sacred dark.
Oak tree, oak tree, oak tree
Oh, take me down where roots begin.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I Bought Lots of Vegetables

Tonight, I made some kale/red cabbage stir fry and ate SO MUCH of it. I am imagining this food is so powerfully good for you... probably because I think I read somewhere that brilliantly-colored food has tons of vitamins or something. Plus, somehow it just FEELS good to eat... like my cells and blood vessels are saying THANK YOU, THANK YOU, KATIE.

Or maybe I just love vegetables?

Here's what I did, in case you want to try to make it yourself (super easy):
  1. Cut up the onion into little pieces, cut the red cabbage into slightly bigger pieces, and rip the kale into like medium-sized (?) pieces - maybe like 1/4 to 1/3 the size of your palm...?
  2. Cook the onions about halfway in some canola oil.
  3. Add the cabbage and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, and cook until the onions are done.
  4. Add the kale and soy sauce and a little bit of water. It is ready when the kale turns a deep green color and is a TINY bit withered. You'll probably have to stir it to get to that point, because otherwise the kale stays on the top and doesn't really cook. This part will happen pretty quick.

You could also do it without the red cabbage. I just had it, so why not use it?

Also, don't overcook either the cabbage or the kale, because it won't be as good. You'll want it to be a little bit crispy.

I used 1 large onion, 1 bunch of kale, and 1/2 head of cabbage. I probably could have stood to use about twice as much kale, because it was a small bunch, and because it cooks down significantly. When you add the kale, it will look like too much, but just add it anyway, and there's a good chance it might not even be enough.

That is all.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hands Free

So pup called me Wednesday just as I was about to do some dishes (after Monday's post, I'll spare you the description of how badly the dishes needed to be done). Blast. My plans are foiled! I thought, somewhat disappointed, because I only very rarely actually FEEL. LIKE. doing the dishes.

Foiled? Not so.

I am, as you know, an engineer, fascinated - since a very young age - by finding creative solutions to everyday problems, as evidenced by the the it's-raining-but-I want-to-ride-my-bike photograph below:

Apparently I peaked early, though, as the bike + umbrella (umbrellycle?) seems to be a much more elegant solution to the rain problem than the following solution to my most recent dilemma involving dishes and a cell phone. Witness... hair scarf + puce-colored binder clip + phone.

Instant hands-free device!!! Ugly and awkward, yes, but still it seemed to function as I imagined.

Seemed to, that is, until Julia and I got disconnected. The phone was set to vibrate, so when she called me back... let me tell you THAT was a bizarre feeling... IN MY EAR. My hands were covered in suds and water, and I KNOW from experience how cell phone + water = very bad* things happen.

So, naturally, I flipped out and ran into Beth's room. AHHH IT'S RINGING. DO SOMETHING. I leaned my head over her desk where she was working on some writing. STICK YOUR THUMB IN THERE AND ANSWER IT. STICK YOUR THUMB IN THERE AND ANSWER IT.

I have such a good sister.

You know, just a day in the life...

*i.e. now the little camera flash is constantly shining and the display screen no longer works even though I did everything I was supposed to like letting it dry for 24+ hours and NOT plugging it in last time I got it wet.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Tell me the best word that comes into your head when you look at the following picture:

I feel like I oughta write a serious post or a poem or something. I haven't done either of those recently. I am really working through some heavy stuff in my non-blog universe. I guess I just don't feel like writing something serious right now.

Monday, August 3, 2009

One Little Baggie

A couple friends and I went to the beach Saturday (o blessed day!), and there, on our way back to the car, lying in the parking lot, was a sack of dog poop that had been run over. It was squirting out on one side, as though re-pooped by the bag, and the thin layer of poop that remained inside the plastic managed to perfectly preserve the intricate contours of the treads. For some reason this delighted and amused me. Immensely.

I pointed it out to my two friends. Believe it or not, they did not find it as amusing as I did, possibly because their senses of humor are not nearly as subtle OR refined as mine.

What can I say? Squished poop just made me tremendously happy.

So happy that I wished I had brought my camera so I could have posted a photo on One Little Joy.

So happy that just now, two days later, I am still thinking of it on the way up the hill from the train and can tell I am smiling to myself so very broadly. So broadly, in fact, that strangers are looking at me and thinking I am probably in love. Or at least very deeply in like. But, no, silly strangers, I am just thinking of squished excrement.

So happy that, when I pass a poop sack that some irresponsible pet owner has left lying around on this low stone wall, I have the urge to grab it and oh-so-discreetly toss it in front of oncoming traffic. You know, to see if I can reproduce the entire beautiful experience again for myself. But I restrain these impulses.

Because, as you all know, I am the literal embodiment of discipline and self-restraint.