Saturday, December 03, 2005

Doors Friday 12/2/2005

These doors lead nowhere, except the parking lot behind the Elegant E's building.

Gia commented that this would be a good way to get rid of a lover.

Is all the life that took place on the disappeared balcony still hovering there, or was it swept away with the rotted boards?

Bird in the Feeder Saturday 12/2/2005


This feeder is on the side of my garage, right outside the kitchen window. My camera doesn’t seem to move fast enough to get the shots I’m trying to take. I love watching the birds in the back yard and at the various feeders around the house.

Friday Evening at Anthropologie 12/2/2005

Four of my writer friends and I went out to celebrate E's birthday last night. It was a very fun evening. I love hanging out with these intelligent, funny, beautiful women.

We had dinner at a French restaurant at the Farmer's Market--mmm!--then went to see "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" at The Grove.

Afterward, we enjoyed the lights and bustle of the shopping area and browsed a bit at Anthropologie. Everything but the sale plates and the stuffed toys was way too expensive for me, but the colors in the displays... well, I have those for free.

I felt a little like a spy taking these!

The only thing I regret about the evening is that I didn't ask E what she thought about the movie before she asked me. I wish I had listened to her excitement about it before admitting to not getting into it. (I haven't seen or read any of the Harry Potters.) I remind myself of the the line from the Paul Simon song that goes "There's no tenderness beneath your honesty." I really could have been honest later. I think we know each other well enough that she wouldn't have felt I let her go on and then ambushed her with a different opinion.

The special effects were great. I liked Hermoine a lot. And Alan Rickman, and Ralph Fiennes, in spite of what they did to his beautious profile.

I felt bad for the dragons who were probably just going about their business when some one captured them and chained them up and set these little wizards upon them. Big dumb animal lover, me.

The bargain bin at Anthropologie:
still nothing I can afford.

Friday, December 02, 2005

How I Open My Mail 12/2/2005

This was an assignment from a group of online photographers: photograph ways that you open your mail.

I'd assembled the implements in the foreground, when I remembered the accidental method.

Dodger was very good about posing for this action shot. I actually coaxed him into dropping a cookie he'd just prized from a hinged tin, and enticed him to take hold of the mail. He truly loves chewing up letters, business cards and coupons.

I gave him back the cookie shortly after his modeling gig. What a good boy!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Advent Calendar Thu 12/1/2005


I love working with geeks. We were all drawn to this place because we get to exploit the pop-culture lint-catching functions of our brains, which are over developed. Here we are loved for knowing who was in what movie when, the approximate date that Silly Putty came on the market, or the birth and death dates of William Shakespeare. Here, we share in each other’s cultural rituals and explorations.

Today we opened the first door on the advent calendar I brought in. At least two of us grew up with these. We taught the others to try and guess what Christmas- or gift-related item might be pictured behind the little paper door. Guesses were good: a doll, a top, a Teddy Bear, Santa Claus, and a duck. (I suspect that L’s been here before. I, too, have seen inexplicable items like ducks show up on advent calendars.)

It turned out to be a candle, so we gave the chocolate to C, whose guess of Santa Claus miraculously seemed the closest to all of us. See how we all get along? Whether competition will become more fierce as the days wind down remains to be seen.

Hmm, 24 days to Christmas and already two chocolate themed photos in a row. When does desire become fetish?

I also included in the girl reading in the shot because she’s part of that room, and I’d like to be her right now.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Chocolate lobster! 11/30/2005


The fabulous MM just returned from visiting family in Maine and brought back chocolates, including this chocolate lobster with candy rocks. This is so much cooler than the saltwater taffy I brought back from South Carolina. Leave it to Maine to do this up right.

She also brought a box of their regular chocolates, each of which has an individual design.

Here’s Haven’s Candies site:

My only question: If people from Spain are called Spaniards, are people from Maine called Mainards?

Wild West McDonald's Tuesday 11/29/2005


I don’t know… I pulled into the parking lot in front of Don Cuco’s to pick up the salads D and I ordered for supper, and this photo just suggested itself. The light was right, eh?

Our little town (pop. around 2000) has a bit of a wild west theme going. This is the McDonald’s out by the freeway. They recently remodeled inside and removed the stuffed cowboy who used to sling a golden neon lariat. Wonder where that is now…

The block-long downtown of Acton has a wooden sidewalk and old-fashioned facades. But I don’t think it comes off as too touristy because we actually use the businesses there: a market, post office, beauty shop, gym, real estate office and Chinese restaurant.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The Restorative Powers of Firelight Mon. 11/28/2005

I was feeling low about progress on my novel rewrite. I lit this circle of friends candle last night. When the room is dark, it throws the shadows of the figures against the wall.

I realize that even a simple candle can feel like a companion sometimes. I’ve written a lot by candlelight, especially when working on the 1820s diary that makes up about 1/2 of my novel. I image that those little flames meant an awful lot to people in the vast darkness at the center of this country in the 19th century.

Monday, November 28, 2005

How I Met Harley & Sadie Sunday 11/27/2005

Extra photos for Sunday. D and I went out for a walk after dark last night. As we neared our house, these two dogs came out onto the street. Hey… These are the same dogs that some one called us about on Thursday, wondering if we’d seen them.

They’d been out wandering all this time and were ready to be friendly. Harley, the piggy pug, was the first to come up to us. Sadie felt that she had to be shy enough for both of them, but D coaxed both of them into the garage and shut the door behind them. The turkey scraps helped get them in, but they were still hungry and thirsty. I heated up a big container of very meaty turkey stew we were going to have for supper and poured it into a couple of plastic containers. They just grunted and slurped and gobbled it all down. They were also very happy about the bowl of cool water I put down for them.

They were both very sweet. Harley even left his bowl mid-feast to come grunt-and-snuggle me with thanks! They were clearly clean and well-treated, and not used to roaming. Lucky the coyotes have plenty of bunnies and quail in the hills this year!

We called the number on their collars and there was no answer. The house is just 5 up from ours, so we walked by, but there was clearly no one home. I drove to our little downtown market and bought a couple of cans of Pedigree, and an alternate supper for us (ribs!). D put down an old blanket for them, and we left the light on in the garage.

They were on the blanket this morning, and were happy to get their dog food. It got down to 35 degrees last night, so they were probably glad for the protection of the garage. Couldn’t bring them in because of the birds. We did that once before with a stray and it just terrorized Dodger, even though he was in his cage.

D just called to say that the dogs’ people called! A friend was supposed to be watching them. They’ll pick up the dogs this afternoon. Whew! We were hoping they weren’t gone for a week or something!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Blood on the sidewalk Sunday 11/27/2005


Sadly, the neighbor’s cat killed another bird from our back yard today. This blood is all that’s left of a life.

The neighbor threw all her five cats out of the house a few years ago when she became allergic. Grrr.

“The rest of them ran away!” she says. More likely they were eaten by coyotes. We’ve found cat skulls on our walks in the hills around here.

I like cats a lot, but I don’t understand how animal-loving people can let them roam to kill. Domestic and feral cats are the number one reason for diminishing numbers of songbirds in the U.S., I’ve read.

I just have to hope that the population balance works in favor of the birds because I’m feeding them. I understand that I’m creating an unnatural concentration of them by providing seed and water, but it still hurts to find blood and body parts on the sidewalk.

It just struck me that this smear looks like the Nike swoosh. Hmm. In another context, it could make a political statement. I dunno about what, but…you know, dEEp.