Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bronx. Zoo. Cobra.

I irrationaly LOVE this.

Bronx Zoo Cobra, yo!

Bronx Zoo Cobra Twitter feed here.

The Window

I spent the first 15 years at my company in office spaces that didn’t have windows, little cubbies and caves carved out of the conference room or wedged between shelving units in a lab. Now, since August, I have a window.

the view from here

This little rectangle is magical. At this moment, a verdin is flitting from branch to branch in the palo verde tree and a lesser goldfinch is hanging upside down on the water spigot beyond the fence, taking a few sips before flying off and then returning to do it all over again, tiny flashes of yellow and black and olive and white across the bare wood. A cottontail rabbit is hunkered in the shade under the big rails of the thick horse fence that is lashed to its posts with barbed wire. The irrigation sprinkler under the tree on the other side of the fence comes on in the morning, leaving a wide, inviting pool that ripples in the breeze and almost looks like a creek lapping against the leaves and twigs at its edges if you glance at it quickly, catching a momentary sparkle and oscillation out of the corner of your eye. Ground squirrels, coyotes, and hawks make regular appearances. Sometimes a bobcat sneaks in a cameo.

Look out the window and I’m somewhere else, maybe in a cool, shady spot in a higher elevation, maybe at a long passed friend’s cabin, maybe at a campsite with my dad. It's a perfect illusion.

For now, I don’t walk around the building to go back there in person, where I might notice it’s not as cool and shady as it seems, or where I can see that my snippet of dirt road is just a driveway leading past the house that sits just out of view if I stay on the other side of the window, where I would have no choice but to look at the inexplicable large metal giraffe standing next to an equally inexplicable badminton court, shattering the illusion.

I stay inside and escape into the world as it is in my tiny rectangle. A Gila woodpecker is on the tree.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Every Damn Day

The Write Every Day ethos has taken something of a hit. Things are apparently too distracting at the momentare those carrots still good? what was I going to do with them, again? is it a good idea to wear a white jacket to work when I work with things that tend to have dirt all over them? how can I convince the neighborhood bats to move into my yard? will anyone notice if I take the last piece of pie?you know, the usual stuff.


I have taken to using a faux-antique typewriter font for my work reports. It looks like my old Smith-Corona typewriter from high school (and college and, unfathomably, grad school as well). This is comforting to me, and comes with the plus side of Word making it impossible to lose track of where I am and type clean off the bottom of the paper and a line or two onto the roller before looking up and realizing I’ve done it yet again; touch typing is a recently acquired and still dodgy skill. I pretend it makes the writing better.

Everything is dusty. My nightstand at home looks like the base of an unshaken snowglobe. Then I blow on it and I’m inside the snowglobe for several seconds. My work desk isn’t faring much better. I sneeze a lot. We need new windows and Pledge by the gallon.

I still don’t know if I’m a processualist, post-processualist, or something else. Nor am I particularly clear on what middle-range theory is and whether I subscribe to it, although I suspect I do and would say oh, is that what that is? were someone to explain it to me and point out it’s what I’ve been doing for the past fifteen years.

Should I have gotten a doctorate? Possibly. Could I have put up with the requisite hoop-jumping (and processualism/post-processualism discernment)? Almost certainly not. Half my professional mail comes addressed to Dr. Boltgirl anyway, so if my colleagues can’t tell the difference, well, that saved me five years and a world of annoyance.

And baseball season begins for the Cubs on Friday. They got rid of Carlos Silva, but unfortunately still have the other 23 guys on the roster besides Ryan Dempster and Starlin Castro, so the season will effectively be over by mid-May and I can get on with waiting for football.

Write Every Day. Maybe tomorrow will be worth reading. The font can only help.