Murky Dreams

It was one of those murky dreams that you can’t quite recall in the light of morning. It made me feel good, but it was an illusive feeling. The dream related to things my father liked. I think it was songs he liked, but it may have been something else.

I was with someone, perhaps a childhood friend, who said or sang snippets of things that created such warm feelings about my father. Unlike nightmares, which are all too vivid on waking, this is a scattered and . . .

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A Moral Line

Is there some agreed upon moral line when earning enough money to survive morphs into obscene profits at the expense of the common good?

We need such a moral line so we could clearly agree when its been crossed. Does a coke plant that depleats the entire water supply of a village to produce sugared drinks cross the line? Does a 9 mpg, ozone-destroying vehicle more expensive than many homes cross the line?

What about . . .

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Refresher Course

I need a refresher course on being me, I thought. I don’t understand where this behavior came from–I’ve never acted this way before. I think I just batted my eyelashes. I might actually be simpering. Who am I?

He nibbled at my ear some more and I heard myself giggle. Yes, giggle. Oh, help me Jesus, I thought, I’ve become deranged. I should run away, but instead I snuggled closer . . .

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Forwarding Address

Disappearing is harder than you think. Many parts of your life are neon signs advertising your forwarding address when you move from place to place. If you don’t want to be found in the new place, you have to take extraordinary measures. You have to be ready in advance and you have to plan ahead.

I thought I was ready. I’d been working toward the goal of disappearing for over a year. I traveled thousands of miles to a small place I’d never heard of before. The first morning I was there I went into a coffee shop for breakfast and saw someone I knew walk by on the sidewalk . . .

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My Home Town

Rocky Ford Melons

My home town is famous for its melons. If you’ve ever been anywhere near Southern Colorado in early fall you probably know about Rocky Ford melons. I got all excited the other day when the local Whole Foods had a big display of Rocky Ford melons. Took a photo and posted it at VeeSees, my photo blog, and now a company that sells melon seeds wants to use my photo.

The Internet is making the world a very small . . .

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Rock Star

I just received an advanced copy of the new Joan Osborne CD. It’s a country album called Pretty Little Stranger. Country? Did I say country?

You know that wailing thing she was so good at—a sort of Middle Eastern keening? She still does it, but in a country song. She’s toned down the husky growl and sings like an ordinary every-day good singer, not like the rocker that she once was.

I’m glad she’s trying a new approach, because I like her and she disappeared for a long time, but country? . . .

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Something red not quite under a parked car caught my eye. I slowed my pace a bit and bent down to see what it was. Elmo. Behind the muppet I saw the wide, frightened eyes of a live human girl-child.

I knelt and leaned down to look under the car. “Hi,” I said. “Are you okay?”

No answer, just more fright and less trust in the eyes. She was four–five tops. I stretched out flat on the sidewalk and tried to look nonthreatening. I cursed my decision not to carry my badge while jogging. “Is that your house?” I asked, pointing at the house beside us. . .

Win the Lottery

As 10 p.m. neared more and more tattered residents from the neighborhood gathered in front of the window of Marrit’s Furniture World. Janie jostled her way to the front of the small crowd, so she could get a good look at the TV. It was hard to read the numbers on the lottery balls if she wasn’t close to the window.

This week Janie had two tickets, and she felt lucky. It was perfect, this moment on Wednesday night each week, this moment of hope and possibility. She put her hands on the glass . . .

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Throw. Catch. Throw. Catch. A game of catch. Silly that it’s so much fun. The motion of the swinging arm. the solid smack of the ball in a mitt. It feels like the motion a human body was built to make. Maybe it’s a lot like throwing a spear, so it feels natural to toss a ball. It’s satisfying at any age, from toddler to elder. Playing catch is a natural activity as elementally human as eating or sleeping or . . .

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I don’t want to look like Popeye, I just want to be strong enough to keep my health. So I’ve been experimenting with yoga, spinning, pilates, and water aerobics. I’ve discovered that the whole world is comfortable throwing around the names of muscles in the belief that they are communicating. I don’t know muscle names–guess I was too busy learning HTML or something, but I’m ignorant where muscles are concerned.

The instructor will say, “Tighten those glutes,” and I whisper to my neighbor, “Where are glutes? What are we tightening?” Or the instructor says, “Stretch that hamstring,” and I look desperately around hoping for a clue . . .

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