Our friend Evany married us, and this photo was taken just as she muttered something about spinning wheels and our first born child.
We got married in July, and man is it a bear to find non-trite wedding readings. This is especially true when it’s not your first marriage and there are already kids in the mix. In case you’re curious, or looking yourself, here’s what we picked.
Here by Grace Paley
Here I am in the garden laughing
an old woman with heavy breasts
and a nicely mapped face
how did this happen
well that’s who I wanted to be
at last a woman
in the old style sitting
stout thighs apart under
a big skirt grandchild sliding
on off my lap a pleasant
that’s my old man across the yard
he’s talking to the meter reader
he’s telling him the world’s sad story
how electricity is oil or uranium
and so forth I tell my grandson
run over to your grandpa ask him
to sit beside me for a minute I
am suddenly exhausted by my desire
to kiss his sweet explaining lips
An excerpt from Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird:
“E.L. Doctorow said once said that ‘Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.’ You don’t have to see where you’re going, you don’t have to see your destination or everything you will pass along the way. You just have to see two or three feet ahead of you. This is right up there with the best advice on writing, or life, I have ever heard”
And finally, Brad is a big fan of Bob Ross and his happy little trees. We chose a bunch of his quotes together, and I arranged them into a sort of found poem. It was so simple, and true, and I ended up loving it:
Arranged quotations from Bob Ross
It’s so important to do something every day that will make you happy.
Just let go, and fall like a little waterfall.
That’s when you experience true joy. When you have no fear.
We’re gonna make some big decisions in our little world.
Don’t be afraid to make these big decisions. Once you start, they just sort of make themselves.
That’s what makes life fun. That you can make these decisions. That you can create the world you want.
Life is too short to be alone, too precious. Share it with a friend.
It’s life. It’s interesting. It’s fun.
Let it make you happy.
If you have good suggestions for wedding readings, please fire away in comments.
Today is lunch with an old friend I haven’t seen since I ran into him at a Paris flea market, and dinner with Brad’s bestie and his new(ish) love. This weekend we’re joining the Women’s March in San Francisco with some friends, and Sunday we have many plants that need potting. What are you up to? Are you joining in any civic unrest? Or does resting in general sound better? Take care of yourself. Some good links for you:
“For three weeks, I wrote down any thought, image or memory that gave me a tingly feeling. I animated the list, and what it accidentally became was a stream-of-consciousness trek through my life. This is the trailer to my brain.” –Nate Milton (via Swiss Miss)
Sunken, 600-year-old Buddha emerges from water in China. This is my jam.
“Surround yourself with people who are doers and who are positive. If you’re going to be influenced by people, both consciously and subconsciously, it may as well be people that are smart, talented, and fun to be around.” Justina Blakeney’s Meditation on Creativity
Ooo. Tea pour-over set.
Women’s bodies are a battleground on all fronts, not just reproductive.
Jennifer Brea is the founder of #MEAction, a patients-rights platform for those who suffer from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, and I’m proud to serve on the board. The disease is more commonly known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and it predominantly affects women. Many patients are diagnosed with a modern-day form of hysteria. Did you even know that was still a thing? “You’re a Harvard PhD student who can no longer write her own name? Perhaps you have the vapors.”
Please plug in your headphones and listen to Jen’s talk. I can’t stop thinking about it.
Do you have a carry-on suitcase you love? I’ve spent hours researching the perfect bag: reading posts by seasoned travelers, watching You Tube videos about luggage, obsessing over the latest collaboration. Nothing ever seems just right for me.
So here’s the plan I’ve settled on as a frequent traveler and educated consumer:
Buy a bag with a single compartment.
It doesn’t have to charge your phone, or have a locking compartment for your valuables, or a place for your suit. Find a carry-on sized suitcase on sale, and then check for:
– Zippers with sturdy pulls that slide easily,
– Wheels that seem sturdy and roll smoothly.
– Handles or something baggage handlers can grab quickly on three sides.
And then buy the sucker. What makes the bag useful is how you pack it. Buying internal compartments separately, and assuming you’ll need to replace the exterior bag every few years, makes good sense.
Here’s how I subdivide a typical carryon:
– Two large packing cubes filled with rolled clothing. We have a different color set for each family member.
– One small packing cube for underwear, socks, PJs, and accessories like scarves.
– A rectangular dopp kitt.
– Shoe bags for my shoes (or you can put disposable shower caps over them)
I also pack three empty bags:
– A checkable duffle for purchases.
– A large mesh laundry bag for dirty clothes.
– A small mesh lingerie bag for packing wet swimsuits.
– A nylon travel purse.
If you buy an inexpensive, but sturdy bag, you won’t mind when it inevitably gets stained or scuffed because you were forced to gate check. You won’t be furious when you have to get wheels or zippers replaced because you paid too much to have the bag break so easily. You won’t suffer buyer’s remorse because one of the pockets isn’t the perfect size for your niche use. And you won’t attract attention to your blingy bag when ne’erdowells are looking on.
Buy a cheap, basic bag, and let each scuff feel as good as a passport stamp.
Art World pettiness is so labor intensive. Artists don’t just talk shit to shame you, they spend a year or two creating something that shames you.
Case in point: A few years ago, Artist Anish Kapoor went a little Sméagol and secured exclusive rights to a pigment dubbed Vantablack. It’s said to be the “blackest black” material available, and it’s his, aaaaall his.
This provoked Artist Stuart Semple, who responded by creating this:
It’s called Pinkest Pink, and you can have some for about five bucks. That is, unless you’re Anish Kapoor. Semple’s shop prohibits procurement by Kapoor or an agent thereof.
The pink pigment sold out almost immediately, and while he was manufacturing more, Semple also developed Diamond Dust.
It’s the glitteriest glitter known to man. Or rather, known to all but that one man.