Favorite things

The flu with a subsequent hacking cough. An endless job transition. Another day of 39 degree Spring. Summer clothes that are now strangely ill fitting after a long winter of eating chocolate and hibernating. Other irritating events that cannot be posted without libel. And when in the hell is Easter?

Ever had one of those months? Me too.

I could keep listing, it might be cathartic. But instead I will greet April like Maria Von Trapp – plucky, hopeful and singing.

When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m feeling sad . . . I simply remember my favorite things and then I don’t feel so bad!

So because sometimes it is hard being brave, here it goes: My Favorite Things.

Crossword Puzzles. Not just any, very specifically the Los Angeles Times Sunday Crossword Puzzles. I am addicted to them. The clues are often puns, so you have to consider all different ways a word or phrase might be interpreted, i.e. the answer to “street wear?” is “rut.” Get it? They are like grownup knock, knock jokes.

My Kindle. Yeah, yeah, I know all the purist book people are aghast. “I like the feel, the weight, the sensual connection to the page.” Here are the facts, I can blow up the font to 48 point and carry 10 fat books in my briefcase. And hubby bought me a pretty purple leather case. Love.

Honey Badger and Randall. Honey Badger don’t care, why should I?

Johnny Flynn. Adorable South African/English boy who sings evocative if inscrutable poetry to Appalachian inspired tunes. He has this achingly deep, complicated voice and plays a vintage 1930’s steel guitar that channels wind blowin’ through the mountain hollers. At a recent concert I was the oldest in the room by about 25 years. His music, however, is timeless.   

Dishes. Happiness is cradling a white porcelain bowl that is all shape and shine and translucence. 

Peasant Food. Super happiness is the same bowl filled with hot stew-goulash-curry-soup-sauce-potatoes. And hunks of crusty bread and cheese. And red wine. And chatty people. And Ikea printed paper napkins.

Making things. Fabric, yarn, paper, stuffing and total control over my own craft universe. A live action Sims Game – I am the god of a patchwork world of sock monkey mortals. It is pretty heady to want something and create it from bits of this and that. Dieting? Ha! I just make new skirts when the old skirts become ill fitting.

MerlinBad TV for some is reality shows. Or loops of the Food Network. I watch a BBC retelling of Camelot that is sort of Smallville meets Mayberry for the Brit tween set. I did watch the first episode of the new Starz Camelot. Although this MA show included blood and writhing naked people, my Merlin has a dragon.

Naps. The floating lantern scene in the movie Tangled. Garnier Surf Hair Texture Putty. Converse sneakers. PaperMate Clear Point mechanical pencils. Butter. “How I met my girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse/lover” stories. Joan of Arc. Rachel’s new house. Mandy Moore. The smell of popcorn. My brother’s facebook page.

Maria was right. I feel great. Favorite things keep perspective in present tense. Favorite things are a sparkly outline of distinction in the blur of a crowd. Favorite things are the object familiars that speak to our unconscious. Favorite things change moment to moment and always stay the same. Favorite things are what we see, what we seek and what we secret home to tuck in our nest.   


9 responses to “Favorite things”

  1. Rachel says:

    Hey, thanks for the shout-out! (By the way, speaking of “making things”, I need some serious help with window treatments.) Sorry you are having a rough time of it. It is the very end of about six months of winter, so things are bound to get better!

    I think a trip south is called for. I will run for the IL border a la the Wisconsin 14.

    What are some other favorite things? My current votes include fleur de sel caramels, clean laundry, the smell of bread baking, homemade Thai curry, a stolen workday hour daydreaming/reading magazines, and Sharon van Etten’s album “Epic.”

  2. PB says:

    YES! Please come south – also the WB and I are coming to Madison and Moda Fabric has a new William Morris line. Things are definitely looking up!!

  3. swells says:

    The Honey Badger! Despite its graphic nature I am so grateful to you for introducing me! I look forward to finding similar delight with less squirming when I make Johnny Flynn’s acquaintance later today. Thanks for this uplift.

  4. F. P. Smearcase says:

    Knitting. I am now obsessed with knitting.

    What else is rescuing me from the ill fit of summer clothing (It was a long, long winter)…Futurama. Lentil tapenade. Going to four theater events in three days. The NY Times puzzle, as usual. People who were distant having plans to be local. Andrew Bird’s “Armchair Apocrypha” even though I can’t shake the impression it is the kind of thing one might hear under the last scene in Gossip Girl when someone decides not to date someone else anymore. Gossip Girl. Karaoke and the piano bar. Kitteh.

  5. PB says:

    More lists! More lists!

    Sorry about the graphic nature of the video swells – I live with smelly teenage boys and we laugh at snake eating.

  6. Tim says:

    1. Spending time with lovely friends after a long work week. LP & RB, I’m looking at you. Also, Swells last weekend.
    2. The Film Noir Festival at the Egyptian Theatre.
    3. The ideal “Honey Badger don’t give a shit!” t-shirt that I have conjured up in my mind’s eye but will likely never exist IRL.
    4. A nice glass of red wine (or two).
    5. And also kitteh (aka kidden, kittum, thee Merle).

  7. LP says:

    7: Not that there’s any connection between numbers 1 and 4!

    PB, I’m sorry you had a bad March – I did too, and like you I am forging ahead into April with renewed hope! Favorite things for me right now:

    1. Looking at the new shelves I just put up in the garage, and marveling at the order that has come to that subterranean universe.

    2. See 1.

    3. Hearing the tinkle of the ice cream truck outside.

    4. Reading the scene RB just wrote in her script today and laughing out loud.

    5. Tim’s #1.

  8. swells says:

    Spending the day allocating scholarship money to students. Perfect weather and dramatic clouds. Only 20 people turning in their Wallace Stevens papers so the load is lighter than I anticipated. Samoas. Raw milk cheddar. Tim’s #1 and Tim’s #4, preferably together.