The Delights of Anonymity in the Hinterlands!

First of all. Some of you may know that Doris Day died yesterday.

She was 97.  She was an incredibly effective animal rights activist. I  loved her movies when I was growing up. And as an adult, I supported her animal rights organization for decades. It was awesome to watch her make truly meaningful changes to the welfare and legal rights of animals in this country. (And in her private life, she was a Christian Scientist, who fully believed in Jesus’ power to heal, and she stood by that, even though a lot of people ridiculed her for it. In my estimate, she really was just an incredible human being. Plus, she was from Ohio!)

Image result for doris day be kind to animals
Doris Day R.I.P.

I named one of my little feral kittens after her. Here’s Doris (now 6 years old) at my kitchen sink, back in early March. (Lovely to look at, but, alas, you can’t touch her or she will scratch you silly because she’s feral.)

Doris at the kitchen sink.

Which reminds me that, after Daddycakes died (he was her father), I couldn’t bring myself to wash the bathroom floor. He had left little footprints there and I couldn’t stand the thought of removing all traces of him, you know? He’s been dead a month now and I noticed this morning that the little paw prints have pretty much faded away.

Anyway.

My ticket arrived yesterday to see Nick Cave at Town Hall in September. Now all I have to do is remember to bring the darn thing  to New York. Only 4 months away. Shouldn’t be too tricky. I’ll just staple it to my forehead and wear it until September. Perhaps seeing it in the mirror everyday will remind me to take the darn thing with me.

I realize that had I chosen the digital option, I wouldn’t have this potential memory problem, but I really wanted to have the ticket stub after it was over. (Of course, it cost 17 hundred million dollars more to get an actual ticket and have it mailed to me, but oh well.)

(Plus they have this “ticket insurance” thing. Where, you’re online and you’ve just purchased your ticket after an 8-minute barrage of truly unpleasant sensory perceptions. The screen is telling you that you’re almost ready to thoroughly finalize the purchase you’ve just made; American Express has already pinged! you on your phone to alert you that someone has already used your card number to purchase some sort of ticket online, “do you recognize this purchase?”; and yet TicketMaster still highly suggests that you purchase ticket insurance to insure that the ticket you’re in the process of really, finally, thoroughly purchasing really actually happens and then belongs to you. Unbelievable. They highly recommend you do this because chances are high that something will go horribly wrong with your purchase and the only way to guard against their fucking up is by spending a few dollars more, even though the sole reason they even exist is to simply sell tickets to people…So I bought that, too.)

So, I highly recommend to myself that I bring the darn thing with me to New York.

Okay!

Today is a lovely day!! Sunny and mild. All I’m doing today is laundry and working on Blessed By Light. Maybe do a little yoga if I can tear myself away from the laptop. I don’t have to run any errands because I already did all that yesterday. In fact, I don’t even have to leave the house until maybe Thursday, and only then if a friend of mine from in town needs a ride to the airport.

Loyal readers of this lofty blog no doubt recall that last year, I let this same friend keep his vintage 1965 VW camper van in my barn for the summer while he went off to Montana. (This is not his van but it looks exactly like this. It’s so cool.)

Well, he’s doing the same thing again this summer and so this past Sunday, he came by to put his van in my barn.  And then I had to drive him back into town.

I can’t emphasize enough, gang, how much time I spend at my desk writing. I write, then write, then write again, and then write a little more.  Now that the Mormon missionaries have stopped dropping by, I interact with basically no one.

I might say hi or just exchange meaningless bullshit with people I barely know, but other than that, now that I’ve moved out to the Hinterlands, I rarely meaningfully interact with anybody in person. I talk to plenty of people on the phone in LA or NYC, but that’s it; nothing too meaningful in person.  So it was actually really interesting on Sunday, driving my friend into town. I don’t really “know” him at all.  Last year, I overheard him saying that he needed a safe, dry, free place to store his van for 5 months so I offered him my barn, and so now we’re “friends.” But I don’t actually know him.

On Sunday, we sat on my porch for a few minutes so that he could smoke half a cigarette, and in those few minutes he told me about a trip he took to Denver to attend a Grateful Dead concert several years ago, and what he told me about that trip (not the concert, just the trip) revealed so much about him.

And then in the car ride into town, he was talking about some roses he had gotten for his mom since it was Mother’s Day, and, again, he revealed so much about himself – simply by the words he was choosing, the things he was choosing to say. And it also magnified what he was choosing not to say. I found it just so interesting.

Of course, we all do this all the time – communicate in this way, choosing words over other words, facts over other facts – but since I rarely interact with anyone meaningfully anymore, I guess it’s just really noticeable to me now. It came into such tight focus, this process of communicating with spoken language.

Yesterday while I was out, without really wanting to, I was listening to this ridiculous conversation between this guy and this girl, they were about 30 years younger than me. It only mildly got on my nerves, but when the young woman said, “If a guy wants to fuck a girl in the butt that much then he should just fuck a guy,” I actually said, “Oh, I totally disagree with that.”

I actually said this, out loud.  They looked at me, stunned, The girl said, “Really?” Like she honestly couldn’t believe that girls might like anal sex, for one thing, or that I had just spoken. And they both looked at me, like they really genuinely wanted to know what I thought about anal sex, and I thought to myself, Jesus Christ, the one time you decide to say something meaningful out in the Hinterlands, THIS is what you choose to say??!!

So I didn’t say anything else. I just sort of smiled. I knew my desk was calling, needing me to come back home and to stop talking to people all unsupervised and stuff.

I’m hopeful that today will yield all kinds of wonderful things for the novel. I’m also hopeful that maybe Sandra might even call me – I’ve been trying to get her to call me for over a week now because I need to talk to her about some important stuff re: rehearsals for Tell My Bones. On Friday, she suddenly texted me from NYC and said, “It’s really noisy where I am right now but as soon as I get somewhere quiet, I’ll call” and that was the last I heard…. Perhaps today she will at long last be someplace quiet. We’ll see!

Meanwhile, enjoy your Tuesday, wherever you are in the world!! I did indeed go back to listening to The Big Jangle during breakfast this morning just because it makes me happy and I thought, so what? It’s better than wanting to cry first thing in the morning, you know?  So I leave you with this! One of the jangliest of the big jangles.  Thanks for visiting,  gang. I love you guys! See ya!!

She threw down her golden band
Crushed it with her feet into the sand
Took her silent partner by the hand
Yeah yeah oh yeah yeah

Somewhere near the edge of town
She said she was torn and turned around
“Can you help me cast this evil down?”
Yeah yeah oh yeah yeah

We’ll drive for the line now
There’s nothing to be lost
You and I will cross over
With no second thoughts

Dreams fade hope dies hard
She cups her eyes and stares out at the stars
Says “I feel we’ve traveled very far”
Yeah yeah oh yeah yeah
Yeah yeah oh yeah yeah
Yeah yeah oh yeah yeah

c – 1978 Tom Petty

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