Tuesday, September 23, 2003


My monitor is slowly but surely dying a painful death.

At this point, I can't read my own site. It's black..... except for the orange links, which are dark red.

I don't know what happened..... all I know is that the monitor has been fried from the moment I woke up and has been getting progressively worse all day. A few more hours and I don't expect to see anything.

So basically..... in the event that I magically disappear, know that I'm still right here, minus the bonus of a visual aid. I'll need to replace the monitor, in the event that the store won't replace it for me. Grrrr......

I guess there's nothing left for me but to read a book.....

Till next we meet.

Monday, September 22, 2003

Imagine my displeasure when, staggering into the house with a grand mal headache and a swollen throat, I find that the water heater has been pursuing it's diabolical scheme to take over the basement.

That was several hours ago. I've popped some motrin and consumed a rather large container of yogurt, since my throat has proven adverse to solid foods. I'll be making tea momentarily. The blankets and cushions are in disarray since I had to move stuff around in order to get the rugs out and lay them outside. My eyes hurt. I'll be staying home tomorrow.

But look at my dedication!!! Below this post you will find everything I wrote this weekend, edited and in the order they were written in. There are some other things I'd like to write, regarding my family, but those can wait. For now I'll leave you with something my dad said that rang very true for me.

"Religion has made a business of the one thing that ought to be free."
A mother cat and her three kittens occupy the deck where I sit, an orange one by the name of "Angel" is sliding off my lap because there simply isn't room enough for them all to play there. They've been attacking my hoodie drawstrings and now "Sarah" has made herself comfortable on myh notebook, forcing me to write around her. There will soon be a kitten shaped white space on the page to the right of which I am currently writing.

I sit with my feet up on a stool, facing the front yard and a thick oak tree, while I listen to the neighbor on his quad. I can hear the neighborhood kids (most of whom belong to a single family) playing on the other end of the block. A dog is barking. A bird is calling. There is no other sound, save the rustling of the trees. No cars honking, no neighbors swearing, no sirens blaring. Sarah, my favorite kitten, looks up at me with wide eyes before laying her head down across her brother's neck and falling asleep. The dog has arrived home from escorting my brother around the block, and she lays down at my feet. The shadows have become long and the air is chilly but I remain, basking in the idyllic sounds and smells that make country living so pleasant.

My dad opens the window behind me to ask me what movie I'd like to watch. The dog yawns and relocates to the grass.

At this moment, I am content. Needing to shift myself around, I remove the kittens one at a time from my lap, and one by one they climb back on. My dad strolls out and sits beside me, and I can smell his cologne. His hair is still wet from his bath and he's barefoot, wearing a robe despite the chill in the air. "Heeeeeeere comes Jack!!" he says, "Jack Frost, and he's coming for YOU!" He's got that crazy look in his eyes. He's referring to the weather of course, and before long he goes back inside.

The mosquitos have grown quite persistent, and I decide to do the same.
The house is old and sturdy. It was built in 1925 by pioneers or hutterites or something. My dad has been knocking down walls and building new stuff in since the day they moved in here, and it's in a constant state of evolution. Layers of floral wallpaper have been stripped to reveal other floral wallpaper beneath, each layer giving insight to a different decade, and a different decorator who wasn't aware that it's best to remove the old before applying the new.

Doors and walls have been rearranged to open up more living space, and my dad's handiwork is visible in the hand-wrought cupboards, bookshelves, banisters, and kitchen table, not to mention the brand new addition and comfortable deck. It's a bizarre combination. In some places the haphazard broken down dilapidation of an old, old house, in some places an artist's rendition of a countryside escape.

The only door in the house, besides the one that leads outside, is the one that leads to the bathroom, and it has no lock. Come to think of it, I don't think the front door does either.

Everywhere I look is the clutter of random trinkets and souvenirs from my childhood. Between the kitchen and living room hangs a large wooden airplane propellor that used to hang in the cabin I grew up in. Beside the couch, a pole that reaches from floor to ceiling, from which sprout two very 70's looking lamps, brown and white, with gold decoration. This used to stand in my grandmother's apartment before she died. Above the stairs hangs the muzzle loader my dad built, and in his bedroom hang five more rifles of various sizes and models, which he also built. There are more guns in the cabinet, including a .44 magnum given to him by the widow of his recently deceased friend.

It's now been several hours since I came in from outside and I've made my bed on the couch, beside the lamps, facing the muzzle loader. Across from me, my brother has passed out on a very small, very old blue couch with bright green embroidery. This couch used to stand in my parents' bedroom, and I used to sleep on it when I was too scared to sleep by myself. A clock in the kitchen is ticking quite loudly. It would be completely dark but for the blue glow of the tv, by which I am writing as I reflect on the day.
To the sound of Star Trek's "First Contact" my dad and I sat and yakked about government conspiracies, the existence of aliens, and rips in the time space continuum. It's possible, we conjectured, that Star Trek is actually a government funded depcition of reality aired in an attempt to dissuade us from believing in extra terrestrial life through a sort of reverse psychology. Time travel is impossible, and it surprises us that someone as smart as Albert Einstein wasted any time on such a vain pursuit. The planet earth is a corrupt place as long as human beings inhabit it, and it will never be free of greed. Our conversation covered a lot of ground before my stepmom and her sister arrived to interrupt us with something dull and irrelevant.

Most importantly, my dad and I have been returning to the subject of God, our rejection of religion, and our personal responsibility to our neighbor. The meaning of life, the definition of success, the search for wisdom. My dad is someone who never fails to challenge me intellectually while encouraging me beyond measure. At least, it's been so for the last couple years. Between us there lies a mutual respect. Only after years of grief and heartache have we begun to relate as father and daughter.

Now he's snoring in the next room and I can't wait to have coffee with him in the morning, before he heads off to work.

Over the years I've found a lot of replacements for my dad, but nothing beats the real thing.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

Home Sweet Home.

I had a good time. How bout you? At present I haven't got time to write about it, so I'll get around to it tomorrow. Right now I have to get some rest.

So have a good evening, and I'll see you tomorrow.
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