Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow

My mom used to talk about people and describe to me as a child why they acted as they did, as if she'd studied them deeply all her life.  She has a great way of explaining her point of view by making you see she follows one energy source that she knows exists and lives somewhere among us.  I grew up understanding this way of believing truth.  I wake up and feel the day, as if there is an emotional weather pattern that guides me.  It affects everything about me.  Sometimes I don't like this way of living and other times I realize it's not so much a choice as it is who I am inside.  My mother's child.   A seasoned soul.  A mythos passed down.
I'm writing this in December and it amazes me how strong the current becomes around the holidays.  The highs are grander but the lows are definitely strong, dark shit storms. Worse every year in my opinion. It feels as though I could look between the air to see just how gray and bleak the mood will be.  Pulling back the emotional curtain so to speak of the world's stage.  And I'm not talking just my own personal depression, which is real and sucks greatly but only now at odd various times.  I'm talking about an actual element that surrounds us all based possibly on exactly what we feel inside collectively.   It's out there and it mixes with the air we breathe in and affects us, our thoughts, our actions, the general outlook.
Yesterday this stir fry was good but not special.  Today I paired the leftovers with some fresh herbs and creamy polenta, the brightness of lemon and it transformed itself.  It was better.  Just like some days you wake up to the same ingredients yet every single fiber is just better.  You can't explain it.  I can't explain it.  Nothing has changed except another day has run it's full cycle.
I usually don't believe the future will bring another good day and when it does comes I consider every single one a miracle.

Monday, September 28, 2015

And Now the End is Near

Apocalyptic warnings were high for this night.  September 28th, the night of the last blood moon in what was called a tetrad.  These moons would fulfill a prophecy of something bad happening in the middle east involving Israel that would change the world.  There were tons of other connected warnings of doom too. The Hadron Collider was to blow up the world when it tried to create a black hole.  The pope was visiting the US here in New York which was a major event the same week as Obama.  There was a meteor coming that was gonna hit the earth allegedly and it was the first time since forever that Jupiter and Venus aligned to look like one big star. Some say that was the Star of Bethlehem seen long ago.  Jade Helm is a military group that was rumoured to be training in 7 states in order to take over the west and enforce martial law, say after the meteor strike so all the poor commoners didn't get any ideas about who the food and resources were to be doled out to and that was the 1% hiding safely in their bunkers underground.
Yep.   A lot of food for thought this week.  P and I were to move out of our apartment by the end of next month and our world was to change pretty dramatically regardless of any of these events.  Moving is so hard and dreadful that I almost had a hope that one of these revelations might be true just to get out of having to live in Sunset Park and increase my bike commute.
I waited for the moon to come around the buildings and then dragged P outside to face the end in our pajama bottoms and coats.  I was happy to see a few other couples doing the same.  Folks even poured out of the bars to check out the progress periodically.   The eclipse was impressive but there were clouds and the long wait for it to come back around was a little anticlimactic.   There was some orangish haze but you wouldn't call it blood red.   Eventually we just went back in.  If it happens, we might as well be comfortable and warm I thought.

I also thought, you know it figures the world would end on a Monday.  Probably the reason we all despise this day intuitively.  I don't want to die necessarily like I used to but if it were to happen, I think it would be nice to all go together.  I always go back to the fact that I don't want to fight my way out of New York City.  The same stark realities of physics hit me like my first game of coed dodgeball in first grade.  There was no winning. There was only circumventing pain.
Take out steak taco salads seemed appropriate as a last supper.  A meal in a bowl.  Everything together.  A food and a life theme I'm starting to embrace.  Nothing separate.  Multiple truths and realities.

Won't You Lay Me Down in the Tall Grass

Is the world spinning faster or is it just me?  You can less easily just sit with your own thoughts for any length of time without feeling challenged through tons of mediums.  And these are big ideas and concepts.  I am not capable of forming solid conclusions this quickly. The news feeds alone confound me with what seems like a fast paced never ending assembly line of journalists and commentaries of every thought diligently trolling out their opinions with crafty, snarky little titles.  One more precious than the last. How does anyone keep up? Social media, friends of friends of friends, coworkers, overheard conversations on subways and in lunchrooms.  Morning coffee with my husband is even feeling like some sort of downloading exchange session of various and random concerns in an attempt to tune our channels in tandem if only briefly.  I feel less and less like we're really with each other and more like I'm passing through his hologram.
Generally speaking, the cyber life is perhaps melding so much into the physical or vise versa that I am unable to distinguish where I am many times.  I need to find a way to ground myself and keep my focus of intent. Processing views is an exercise that I do enjoy however the rate of information coming in is putting a strain on my 53 year old infrastructure.
I blended art with food in this colorful pork stir fry using black rice and perfectly steamed vegetables.  I paired it with a memory of gathering my mom's flowers she grew on the hillside of our backyard, along with mulberries and mud from the creek.  I would form the most beautiful pies decorated with nature. Shaded from the sun by the trees, afterwards I could lay my head in the tall grass that grew extra high on the bend of that sloping sanctuary and just listen to my own breath mix with that of the world's.  I found that perfect spot and understood completely where I was in those moments.
I want to be there again or somewhere like it.  A place where my nails aren't bitten to the core and my anxiety and nervousness don't dictate the state of my own union.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

These Boots Were Made for Walkin'

You used to hear housewives talk about needing new dinner ideas.  Getting stuck in a rut of meatloaf and chicken. Now there are a thousand times more interesting food recipes and yet, one can still get a little stuck.  I mean it requires creative thought, prep, supplies and more thought!
Everyday grocery items for me include lots of chicken and ground turkey and tons of vegetables but I'm not ready to let go of my meat grip, just yet.  It's coming but I just.... can't.  Ground meat for days right now!  Burgers always sound good though, thank goodness.  But I secretly feel like I fail a bit every time I'm forming those patties.
P buys these hummus containers all the time, in all these great flavors. He eats half of them and then buys and opens new ones.  Sigh.  I thought to stuff my turkey burgers with black olives and leftover hummus, then top with more green olives and red onions.
Nice!  A girl's Got to have new ideas.  God forbid you don't continue to progress.  New & different.  New and different.  And the band played on.  Do you remember when people used to wear shoes until they were so old and worn?  Dirty and scuffed up. It was the norm of the late 60s, early 70s.  My class in grade school had some of the gnarliest shoes.  The soles of John Herandeen's cheap peeling loafers flapped for months before he got a new pair of the same ugly ass KMart specials.  But that didn't stop him from sliding across that parking lot with those plastic heels all goofy with that toothy grin.  And cars.  You would see these seedy, weather-beaten, shabby vehicles puttering down the road.  Doors couldn't open except by the expert hands of the driver. Windows shattered. Primed but never to be painted jobbies.  And sounds.  Some of the noises cars made, like sick with bad colds.  And there was no shame in that. If it ran, that was the purpose, the rest was fluff.  It was just how it was.
Now some people judge you by the new on your shoes. Some wouldn't be caught dead in a dirty sneaker.  And I haven't seen anything but sparkly fresh cars for years lining the streets in the latest models.
In general it seems everyone is also more and more polished.  My gray hair is getting all wiry and wild. It's way too long and for some reason, I really dig that.  I like shoes that form to a person's foot.  I love imperfections in people's smiles and teeth.
And in that same vein, I also love food with a little story. Or dishes that come out great but use leftovers or common unsexy vegetables.  In the end we're all dirt and dust.  Why stray so far from our truth?

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Seasons of Wither Holding Me In

I'm writing this in December, that's how backed up I am but felt it important to mention due to the season we're in now as opposed to the carefree days of September when I made this happy little chicken salad stuffed tomato over quinoa. 
I had a day off and even though I'm almost professional at fighting off depressive thoughts at this point, I heard a great song, Seasons of Wither,  from my past and it brought back things with it that I didn't even realize were connected to that time.  Sixteen years old and pretty seasoned already at self medicating.   I had years of trial and error under my belt functioning while inebriated in class at school but now I was adding the driving element.  The stakes were getting a little higher each year. Before I was not responsible for anyone else but myself.  I was now aware of patterns and predictable outcomes to bad situations.  Everything changed after 16.
I didn't understand that I was precious back then.  How I must have looked to anyone looking in.  I wondered if anyone ever did look in?  Maybe I dreamt of someone actually looking in and saying 'Oh my gosh. what the hell are you thinking?!'  Someone getting upset and horrified, taking quick action.  But I knew better.  I did.  Up until this day I didn't believe I valued myself or had any traits to preserve back then.  I thought you went out and made those or they were built through hard work or talents.  I figured I'd get some value after I got a little older and settled down, made something of myself.  I never wanted to say I was taught because that puts blame.  There was no blame, just memories. Kids were looked at differently back then as well.  We had a vague understanding of our rights. Godgiven or otherwise.  People got away with treating kids like crap.  Teachers, parents, neighbors, siblings.  It was all a little too survival of the fittest in the 70s.  But kids got away with too much as well, under the guise of being 'just a kid'. Not a person that has any control over their whole lives or futures.  Just a kid.  Someone who is overwhelmed with a new body, loads of hormones, feelings and emotions, is being introduced to love and heartache and the seriousness of the world through music and life.
But what came to me after hearing this song that used to bring my buzz down a bit way back then wasn't my sadness for that little precious girl.  It was a huge giant pie plate to the face of guilt for myself, to myself.  Splat! I realized I carry even more crap than I had ever anticipated.  But it was different on this day.  This day I saw clearly that even though some of my sadness was true and warranted, I was very guilty of knowing better after 16.  I knew enough.  I knew right from wrong, which is all you need to know in some ways. If no one else was there before, I was there now, looking in and I was horrified.  I was disappointed.  I was letting people down and I ignored that. I under achieved and let myself get away with it.  I fell into almost every hole out there.  I ignored all the tools in my bag.  I did almost everything I could to screw up.  And I saw all of it because I was there!  I wasn't going to become insightful. I already was at 16. And because of that I carry some of the blame that I keep avoiding.  I did know better!
If you know something, then you know it.  If you choose to ignore it, then it becomes partially yours to hold.  That is true now and it was true then.  And if I think about it too long or dwell on the truth, I could put myself through hell.  As a matter of fact, I think I already did.
But you know what?  I'm gonna go ahead and just forgive myself for screwing up all my opportunities and what could have been a very sweet perfectly respectable life. Maybe she knew even more than I can understand now, that kid.  It was a hard truth to swallow at first but I just needed to eat some humble pie on this day, along with a beautiful salad.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Ball of Confusion

I was one of the last people to join Facebook in the universe.  And thank goodness in some ways because lately I've noticed these '5 or 6 years ago today' posts.  That would crush me! I don't want to be reminded of a day years ago unless I'm in the exact right frame of mental order or it could send me, gosh, I don't even know but most likely nowhere good.  Time has always been a fickle friend to me.  Similar to my (lack of) sense of direction.  I don't comprehend time in the same way I believe that others do.  To me it's a giant swirly wad, not a constant line.  Most often I deal with issues or situations several years after the actual occurrence.  Because for me, the right time to deal with them seems to come to me like a package delivered at my door.  One day it just appears and I open the box and get to it.  I never said it was a good process, just one that I've learned to accept.  Plus every time I scope back, I have to acknowledge how bad I seem to be at managing relationships.
I am in a year long experiment with social media.  A trial period I've given myself to try to be more like the better adjusted.  See if I can integrate a bit more into so called society. Communicate with people on a regular basis and share stories and experiences as they play out.  Lots of surprising bonuses, like making more connections off line somehow with people that mean the world to me.  And so far just a few bumps in the road that I'm sure everyone shares online.  The most consistent input is my daily meal photos.  But the stories behind those meals are here in the blog, the real meat of my reality.  The photos of the plates are my version of a selfie.
I'll never be an extrovert or a people person.  At best I do well one on one, where I can really shine or in groups of 3 or 4 tops.  But I think it's important to keep trying to connect and communicate, participate and contribute no matter how far off the grid you live in your mind.
I made an avocado cream sauce with yogurt that was heavenly over refried beans and corn with hunks of chopped roasted lemon chicken breasts on top.  I'm digging these layered meals where you put everything in your mouth with one bite.  No separate components.
It's more like how I see the world and time.  It's all one huge mass.  Some of us don't experience it in the same way and that's, okay.