Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Love is a Mix Tape’

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

very cold at about ten AM

very cold at about ten AM

very cold!

very cold!

And yet there are flowers...a ranunculus...

And yet there are flowers…a ranunculus…

and grape hyacinth...this batch bloomed early last year, also.

and grape hyacinth…this batch bloomed early last year, also.

I walked down to Olde Towne Café on this chilly mid morning because I wanted to see the rearranging that owner Luanne had done during her days “off”, Sunday and Monday.

a new chess table sit spot

a new chess table sit spot

She wants to encourage patrons to play chess.  I cannot help because I don’t know how.

all the red vintage kitchen things gathered together

all the red vintage kitchen things gathered together

A wheel instead of stained glass in the window makes for a better view.

A wheel instead of stained glass in the window makes for a better view.

treasures

After a breakfast panini, I walked briskly home and considered doing something outdoors, like perhaps edging a bit of lawn.  The sweet neighbour cat, Onyx, clearly hoped I would stay outside.

Onyx

Onyx

Onyx often visits our garden.

Onyx often visits our garden.

This cat will not scratch and bite when his belly is rubbed.

This cat will not scratch and bite when his belly is rubbed.

He got very sawdusty because of a project Allan was working on.

He got very sawdusty because of a project Allan was working on.

onyx5

When I went into the house to consider getting garden gloves and tools, I noticed the way that our cat Calvin was approaching the day.

Calvin still in bed

Calvin still in bed

And I changed my mind and sat down with a book for the rest of daylight (feeling guilty) and then into the evening (feeling relieved that daylight was over and I could stop feeling guilty about being indoors on a sunny day).  I was reading Rob Sheffield’s Love is a Mix Tape for the second time because I wanted to segue directly into its sequel.  This music writer’s memoir tells the story of the love between two young rockers and then the story of grief when Rob’s wife dies suddenly of a pulmonary embolism at age 31.  The sadness I felt during the last half of the book was intensified this time because I now follow a blog of a gardener whose wife died suddenly in a similar way.   Here are a few quotations that especially moved me, courtesy of Goodreads making them easy to find:

From Love is a Mix Tape: “It’s the same with people who say, ‘Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.’ Even people who say this must realize that the exact opposite is true. What doesn’t kill you maims you, cripples you, leaves you weak, makes you whiny and full of yourself at the same time. The more pain, the more pompous you get. Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you incredibly annoying.” 

“When we die, we will turn into songs, and we will hear each other and remember each other.” 

“I had no voice to talk with because she was my whole language.” 

“I was helpless in trying to return people’s kindness, but also helpless to resist it. Kindness is a scarier force than cruelty, that’s for sure. Cruelty isn’t that hard to understand. I had no trouble comprehending why the phone company wanted to screw me over; they just wanted to steal some money, it was nothing personal. That’s the way of the world. It made me mad, but it didn’t make me feel stupid. If anything, it flattered my intelligence. Accepting all that kindness, though, made me feel stupid.

Human benevolence is totally unfair. We don’t live in a kind or generous world, yet we are kind and generous. We know the universe is out to burn us, and it gets us all the way it got Renee, but we don’t burn each other, not always. We are kind people in an unkind world, to paraphrase Wallace Stevens. How do you pretend you don’t know about it, after you see it? How do you go back to acting like you don’t need it? How do you even the score and walk off a free man? You can’t. I found myself forced to let go of all sorts of independence I thought I had, independence I had spent years trying to cultivate. That world was all gone, and now I was a supplicant, dependent on the mercy of other people’s psychic hearts.” 

If you love alternative rock music, or if you have experienced such loss of a loved one, or both, this is a beautiful and moving book, and it is often funny and endearing about the music.  I wanted to know Renee and agreed with the author that the whole world had been robbed of her; he felt that he was luckier than most because he had gotten to spend the most time with her.

I shake myself out of the pensive mood brought on by thinking about that book to tell you that Allan was working on a project, one he had been preparing for by doing this for the past couple of days:

wood

recently, in the garage

thin strips of wood all made from scrap wood from other projects

thin strips of wood all made from scrap wood from other projects

Today he began to glue them onto the ugly 1970s front door.

indoor project for a cold day

indoor project for a cold day

What can I say?  I was very lazy and photographed this with my phone from where I sat in my reading chair.  You can see the pretty green glass that Suzy Q’s Magical Glass cut for us the other day.  It replaced a hideously ugly plastic orange strip.

door

door

You can see that he stained the strips of wood in different natural colours.

That’s about all that happened!  I finished Love is a Mix Tape and moved on to Turn Around Bright Eyes, a sequel memoir by the same author.

Wednesday, 5 February 2014 (part one)

Here's how the door looks now...almost done!

Here’s how the door looks now…almost done!

I have much to write about for today as we took a tourism hospitality tour; in this entry, I’m sticking to what happened at home and Olde Towne.

After the tour (which will be my next entry) we went to Olde Towne at 3:15 for a very late lunch.  Allan helped our neighbour (two blocks down) Chris hang a vintage surfboard for decoration.

board

At four o clock (closing time), Luanne put out the closed sign and declared “Now it’s a private party!” and sat with us for awhile.  A fellow who is here from Peru and who loves to surf had a good long talk with Chris on the topic.  Chris had actually been out surfing in yesterday’s cold weather.  (People wear wetsuits for winter surfing here.)

two surfin' dudes

two surfin’ dudes

This is more my kind of winter entertainment:

food

Olde Towne treats

At home, I caught up on my two favourite blogs (as I’ve been reading books more than turning on the computer), The Miserable Gardener and the Tootlepedal blog.  And now a late dinner and a couple of episodes of Treme, season three, then some late night reading.  Hey…we’re back on staycation!

Read Full Post »