So for weeks there’s been weird stuff going on with my left eye that has finally morphed into a sty monster of sorts. And for all of these weeks, I have been pretty much completely ignoring the accumulating symptoms, other than occasionally noting them to Morrison. Instead I have been worrying and obsessing about much grander things. I am so consumed by thoughts about large things that are basically out of my control that I neglect to notice something happening right in front of me, or rather, on my face. I’m using my eyes to take in data that I turn into worry and stress and I don’t even stop for a moment to take stock of the faulty equipment. I’m sure that Buddha or Gwyneth Paltrow has some fine reflective phrase about this. Probably something like: take care of your physical self so that you’re able to face (or even SEE) the storms ahead of you, imagined or otherwise.
My sweet mother thought to save some flowers from the wedding and preserve them in a frame! How dear. I share this with you A.) because it really is the sweetest and looking at it makes my heart swell and it most likely will for yeurs B.) FOR THE REMARKABLE WORDPLAY NO BUT REALLY WHEN IS THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF GOING TO HIRE ME TO WRITE THEIR PUNS
I woke up REALLY needing to find a picture of the book I learned words from as a kid, and HERE IT BE:
I think this was all of elementary school, opening this owl and shoving its contents into my head. I was always good at memorizing, not so much internalizing. And so when my vocabulary sort of froze at the age, of, what, 24? Is that when the brain stops growing? I ended up with a moderate but far from impressive collection of words. I know no fancy synonyms for moderate or impressive. For a writer, my arsenal is limited. When I read I do so with Dictionary. But every now and then, I meet a word that I like, and it sticks in my head like gum I can’t see. And so I try and trot it out, and it’s usually awkward like trying to make a friend as a grown up, HOW IS YOUR LIFE TODAY, PERSON? But if I persevere (a word that I know ONLY because I have a cousin named Perseverance) I can normalize it and stop saying it surrounded by question marks, like I’m on stage at a spelling bee. And so today, I declare to you, I will use my new words with alacrity, which is just a sharp and beautiful little word that I always say in my normal life, by which I mean, with willingness and cheerfulness.
Very pleased to announce that we have graduated from crappy, flammable Ikea furniture to sturdy, maybe slightly less flammable, moderately priced CB2 furniture. I am also proud to announce that the bookshelf contains a great many old issues of the Babysitter’s Club, and that Morrison plays video games on the TV. ARE WE GROWN UPS YET?
At some point, I decided to stick these words at the end of the The Cake script:
END OF PLAY.
NOTE: This is the end of the play part of the play. Ideally, upon exiting the theater, the audience is surprised with an actual CAKE, waiting for them. The wonderfully terrible grocery store cake that you never let yourself eat. Ideally, everyone then stands around together, eating cake.
And I will NEVER. REGRET IT.
In this week’s New Yorker!
I wish I didn’t need it, but I do, so Big it’s Sad. I know I care too much about how I’m seen. But it really only takes one subtle compliment, like just a non-negative thing, in a sea of ‘Brunstetter is annoying’ to make me think and feel, Onward! There is something There. If nothing else, I have affection.
I was re-reading the Boxcar Children last night, like you do. I came across the part where the kids find the old broken dishes in the dump, take them home, clean them off, create a quick makeshift shelf in their boxcar, and arrange their new dishes on the shelf so that the boxcar might feel like home:
And it filled me with SUCH FEELING. I remember reading this part for the first time years and years ago. I remember how it made me long for a house with shelves that I could arrange things on. And I realize, that perhaps every time I can’t leave my house without making my bed or every time I put flowers on the table or stack dishes accordingly, and then do this psycho thing where I just kind of pause and look at the Order, appeased, I am living out this very boxcar children moment over and over.
Sister Anne got us a gift certificate to Framebridge as a wedding present, and I must say, never driving to a frame store ever again. While in the past I’ve spent hundreds of dollars framing things because it seems to be what grown up humans do, with Framebridge, for a mere 100 bucks, I got this beauty framed AND shipped to me. What’s more, for no extra charge, an ACTUAL HUMAN DESIGNER PERSON looks at your picture and recommends a frame for you in the forest of choices. NEVER GET IN YOUR CAR OR TALK TO ANYONE AGAIN! HERE’S TO ROBOT PEOPLE WITH FRAMED PORTRAITS IN THEIR STEEL AND LED LIGHT HOUSES! (Sidetone, re: robots, were they ever to revolt, The Foster-Keddies and Brunstetters combined could clearly take them.)
THIS MORNING I REALIZED I HAVE NOT ONE NOT TWO BUT FIVE BLUE AND WHITE STRIPED SHIRTS. OBVIOUSLY I LAID THEM ALL OUT ON MY BED TO TAKE A PICTURE OF THEM TO MAKE FUN OF MYSELF LATER.
AS I TOOK THE PICTURE, I RECEIVED THIS PROMOTIONAL EMAIL FROM WILLIAMS AND SONOMA:
WHAT DOES IT MEAN
AM I BEING WATCHED
WHAT AM I BEING TOLD TO DO
PROBABLY JUST BUY MORE BLUE AND WHITE SHIRTS
OKAY FINE RUSSIA WILL DO, BYE
Yesterday, in one of the stranger Hollywood but not Hollywood afternoons of my life, I had the privilege of attending a Golden Globes ‘gift suite.’ Basically a bunch of jewelry designers, skincare makers, and charities gather in a penthouse and wait for celebrities to visit their booth, so that they can tell them all about their product or cause, in hopes that the famous person will then champion the face lotion / cause. The celebrity or out of place TV writer gets sort of marched around the room and handed free things, and a sort of stressed out ‘host’ has to introduce them to each vendor, and genuinely try but mostly mispronounce their name every time perhaps as Backah Brunsettler, and then hold the free things the famous person gets handed, because famous people and lower level TV writers cannot hold things with their hands. It was a strange glimpse into the life of a person who just gets given things for no reason. Highlights were the Vagina cleaner, the woman who gave me a sample of her perfume then pitched me her pilot idea, and last but not least, Viola Davis, who floated behind me with an entourage of what appeared to be granddaughters, generously thanking everyone, giving each person time and attention, showing the rest of us how it is done.