Monday, October 27, 2008

Resurfacing (2000)

Sometimes it is as though I have had amnesia
I remember the birth of the beautiful child
and here is this beautiful man

who I know so well but not at all

He has been with me all along
I just don't remember...
I have missed him in my life

a dull lingering ache

The kind of ache that can be ignored
if one stays busy enough,
or creates enough chaos and drama

or self medicates it back down

Always it resurfaces
again and again

And what of the other man
did this end something significant?
Or preserve a place in the future
as something much more than it was?

Another kind of resurfacing

Time can heal all wounds
We shall see...

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Of Music and Mullets

Gapetto (The Keeper) and I had our 10th 
wedding anniversary on the 18th. I don’t 
know about you but I haven’t done anything
(or anyone!) consistently for 10 years until 
now. We decided to go for a long weekend 
to Nashville. That’s right, Nashville. 
If anyone has looked at my bio or met me 
they know I love twangy women: Allison Krauss, 
Shawn Colvin, Nancy Griffith, Beth Orton, etc.

Now I don’t think I mentioned this before 
but my husband is a saint (occasionally). 
He’s never much cared for my music
but he knew I have been wanting to go 
up there. Generally I go see my girls with 
our good friend who I’ll call The Husband
Understudy. He says and I quote,

“It’s all the work, none of the perks.”

I’d say bless his heart but he loves 
the music as much as I do. And he knows
he’s always got someone to go with him.

But getting back to Gapetto and me. 
We did all the touristy stuff - which there 
is ALOT of. We went to the Country Music
Hall of Fame, Studio B (where we sat at 
the very piano that Elvis warmed up on), 
we tried on cowboy boots and hats, even 
a mullet cap (did NOT purchase that).

(He's all mine Ladies!)

We went to Cooter’s and had my picture 
taken next to General Lee. It’s amazing how 
I have made it nearly 49 years in this life without
knowing who the heck The Dukes of Hazzard 
were. I am sorry that I couldn’t keep that 
streak going, frankly.

As I once asked Gapetto when we were dating

“Didn’t your mother
ever make you play outside?!?”

The man knows his television.

And we listened to music. 
Sweet, Sweet Music. We heard a guy
named Mike Farris who sings the most 
raucous, New Orleans style gospel 
I’ve ever heard and he ain’t bad for 
a white boy, in fact he is amazing. 
It was like being at a rock concert - loud!
Good and Loud! Love him! They were 
recording live that night for his upcoming 
album so the place was going wild and 
me and Gapetto were too. 

He liked him, he really liked him.

And of course, everywhere we turned we saw Elvis.

If I had a nickel for every picture, full 
size mannequin and cut-out we saw 
of Elvis I might have been able to 
pay for a tank of gas. Maybe.

And we slept! We slept in till 8:30 or 
9:00 everyday and that was on Central time
Ah, sweet sleep. Without the Dolly Llama 
and the Bunny Rabbit the only reason to 
get out of bed was because Gapetto 
can't sit still. He has got to get up and go. 
And go we did.

Happy Anniversary to us.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gabriella and the Thermometers

Here is the sculpture of Gabriella (see previous post)
that Gapetto created. I LOVE her - unfortunately Gapetto 
made it for his mother (dubbed Yoda by my sister). 
But they live three doors down so I get to see her (Gabriella 
AND my mother-in-law) when ever I want to. And then
sometimes when I don't - but I digress...

Gapetto and I are both graphic designers - so we often
will choose form over function - at least for ourselves.
Case in point, we have an antique 1950's O'Keefe and 
Merritt stove in our kitchen like this one.

You've seen it a million times on TV - it's always in the 
background of some young hipsters apartment.  We 
renovated our kitchen and HAD to have it. It had been
restored after all... just not necessarily to working order.
The ovens are 50 degrees off - one side 50 degrees cooler - 
one side 50 degrees warmer. My peri-menopausal mind 
cannot keep track of which is which. So I bought those 
little oven thermometers to stick in each one to help me.
But they disappeared! Now I know I can get dingy - 
but how the heck do you lose thermometers from an oven?

I know this photo of Gabriella is low res but if you look 
closely you may notice she has thermometers for eyes!

Nothing metal is safe in my house!

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Friday, October 17, 2008

The Keeper

Husband Number 2 (the Keeper) is a handsome, creative,
loving man. Our relationship is strong after some stumbling
blocks (that which does not kill us...) Suffise it to say I am
crazy about him.

On the other hand (design flaw no doubt - having two
hands I mean) he drives me crazy. As my friend Mary told
her Husband Number 2 (also a Keeper) “it isn’t that we’re
not good partners - it’s that we are not good roommates.”
Put those words right into my mouth.

Gapetto (The Keeper) is a fixer of things, a renovator, a
creator, a borderline hoarder?!? He gets it from his mother.
She has boxes piled to the ceiling in the garage. She is always
going through them, rearranging them, scurrying here and
there like a squirrel in autumn, but there are always
The Same Amount of Boxes.

We have boxes EVERYWHERE. In the basement, in the garage,
in the sunroom. We have boxes that haven’t been opened
since cardboard was invented. And now we have plastic
boxes - big things with lids. At least before there was a
chance things would mildew in our old basement and I
could chuck the whole thing but, no, these suckers keep
your sh*t FOREVER! Damn you Rubbermaid!

A few years ago Gapetto signed up for a welding class. He
took to it like a duck to water. While others were practicing
straight line welds he made a sculpture of me and Melba

(worlds best chocolate labrador) in the first two weeks while
also working on a cowboy with a lariat and a runaway horse
for the yard. They are amazing! I love them. But now...

we collect rusty metal things and I mean BIG rusty metal things.

His original idea was that all of his sculptures would be created
from found objects (ie free junk) so we have piles of the stuff.
He has so much metal he doesn’t know what he has. Now when
he comes up with a sculpture idea he sketches it out and then
starts surfing eBay and haunting antique stores and flea markets.

What about the SCRAP in our basement, in our garage, in our
back yard? And then...

The Last Straw.

I came home and saw a stripped boxsprings propped up against
our house.

“Honey? It is starting to look a little low rent around here.”

What came to mind was changing our respective last names to 
Clampett. Maybe even putting a nasty upholstered couch out 
in the front yard. I think I practiced AMAZING restraint of tongue.

He allowed that I was probably right and removed the offending
object. The springs became the hair on the most beautiful sculpture 
to date - a winged angel on antique roller skates playing a trombone -
I dubbed her Gabriella. And as soon as I figure out how to insert
pictures I’ll show them to you.

What I know is this

You take the good with the bad.

If you look beyond the mess you might see the beauty inside.

And you CAN make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear or maybe some 
old rusty boxsprings.

Or at least Gapetto can.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Letter - July 1999

Dear Merrily,

I've wanted to write this letter ever since I saw my own face smiling back at me. On April 1, 1997 my parents gave me the letters you sent them when I was eleven. I've thought about this letter alot since then. Only recently have I had the courage to attempt writing and I've found it is as difficult as I imagined. It's hard to put a lifetime of thoughts and feelings into sentences and paragraphs. I have to start somewhere though, because there is alot I want to tell you and alot I want to know about you.

I want you to know what think of you. I've always thought of you as a nice lady. But when I saw your face and read what you wrote about me and how considerate you were to my parents, I was overwhelmed. All the wondering...and you seem so sweet and so nice and so wonderful.

I want you to know that I've never regretted what you did when you were nineteen. I've always been proud to have been adopted. My parents always told me that somebody loved me enough to give me up and somebody loved me enough to take me, I've always believed that to be true. When I read what you wrote about loving me with all your might when you carried me I cried. I wondered why I was so lucky to have an angel bring me into this world.

I wonder how you're doing alot. How is [Mr. In-The-Wrong-Place-At-The-Wrong-Time]? How are your cats? (I'm allergic to cats.) How are you? Do you have any children? I thought about you on Mother's Day and wished you a happy one.

I've written this letter so may times. I really want it to be perfect, but it never seems to come out right. I wish I could meet you. I've always thought that one day I would like to meet you. And that's a big part of why I'm writing you now.

My best friend Melanie and I are taking a road trip around the country in August. We are going to stop in Atlanta for a few days in the middle of the month. If you aren't too busy and would like to meet then I would love it. Of course it's up to you. But if you would, you can send an email to my mom's address and I'll read it. Or if you want to send a letter, that's okay too. I just suggested email because we are leaving on the twenty-sixth [of July] and I don't know if a letter would get here in time. If this is too sudden of you don't have an interest in meeting me, I will understand. If that's the case, I would still like to communicate with you.

Hope to hear from you soon.

Love Bryan

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