June 30, 2005

This week's top played

I've been hip-hop heavy this week, re-discovering old favorites and mixing in a few new ones with just a touch of other genres here or there... just a touch. I don't know what it is, but I've been a serial head-nodding, car-dancing, street humming, post-work partying, ass-shaking girl of late.

And I've been noticing all the little things again -- the tiny details that can just make your day because you're sure you're the only one who thinks the 1) graffitti on the 6th floor of the parking garage or 2) the way the new guy at the cafe across the street nervously touches his right eyebrow or 3) the old couple carefully holding hands at the bus stop is beautiful and inspiring, somehow.

I think it's all the sun that's making me a little crazy. It's had a good effect on the way I've been thinking about music, and I've found myself smiling at strangers (which could actually be dangerous on the streets near my office) and actually accepting compliments without eye-rolling or sarcasm. Whatever it is, it's been making me unusually happy. What can I say? You tell me. Listen to these 11 songs (but not in this order) and tell me if you're not feeling sorta new.

1. "Acid Raindrops" -- People Under the Stairs (if you're not listening to them, start now and remember who told you to)
2. "Flava in Ya Ear" -- Craig Mack remix feat. B.I.G., Busta Rhymes, LL, etc.
3. "The Gift" -- Blackalicious
4. "The Wreckoning" -- Boomkat
5. "Ghetto Pop Life II" & "Medieval" -- Danger Mouse & Jemini
6. "Quando Quando" -- Michael Buble feat. Nelly Furtado
7. "Who's to Say" -- Vanessa Carlton
8. "These Words" -- Natasha Bedingdield
9. "Things I've Seen" & "Karma" -- Spooks

June 29, 2005


One in a rush of bodies,
a living wave of motion,
I stepped off the ferry...
cars and sea behind me, land ahead.

Slicing the thickly salted air in my hurry,
I watched the dock pass
furiously beneath me.

I drove each step into the future,
pounding it back with my hastening soles.
I pretended not to be terrified
by yesterday grinning at my heels.

His stillness caught my eye as I passed.
Oblivious to splinters he leaned,
leather elbow to worn rail.

Barefoot and dirty,
he challenged me
to pause a moment,
to admire.

I tried, but didn't understand.
My thoughts were with tomorrow.

Shaking his head,
he fixed his eyes on the horizon,
watching it approach.

Suddenly, my breath stopped in my throat
as he stood
so still,
and I saw him at last.

Tell me the time -- your pallid wrist seems tremendous with hours,
with every minute and day that has not been mine!
Lend me your tattered watch so that I may have an eternal moment like yours.

Give it to me!
I am desperate for it -
even breath, daring gaze, standing still -
make it mine!

But he shook his head once more,
and, smiling, unclasped his watch,
letting it slide slowly past finger and earthy thumb.

As it clattered through a gap in the warping dock,
its ticking disk caught,
briefly suspended in time (which continued without it)
before dissapearing quietly in the dark water below.

And he eased by me,
eyes up,
into the past.

June 24, 2005

The Friday Five

1. Can you share a tale of a favorite summer cookout/get together?

Last year, on the 3rd of July, L. and I found our schedules dissapointingly void of plans for the following day. So, on a whim, we decided to pack our bags and abandon our hot apartment at 11 o'clock at night and drive to her cabin in Chelan to seek some adventure. Less than 2 hours later, we arrived, hoarse from singing at the top of our lungs into the darkness to stay awake. That night and early into the next morning, we spent hours horizontal and side by side in the dark on the deck. There, we watched the stars and the glowing tips of her cigarettes (both constantly burning) and fell into the comfortable conversation that lifelong friends do: life, sex, loves past and present, music, the future, our childhood, etc.

The next morning, we hit the lawn outside in our standard summer uniforms -- bikinis and brightly colored flip flops, straw bags full of lotions, oils, cigarettes and towels, a cooler stocked with a fifth of rum and near-frozen Pepsi, armloads of cd cases and a hot pink, portable cd player made in 1996.

Later that evening, we drove into town for the fireworks... and found that the road into town was surrounded by a wildfire, which we spent a good hour staring in to. You know how if you sit around a bonfire for a while, eventually everyone gets real quiet and just looks? And how your mind just sometimes follows the lead of your eyes and kinda falls into the fire? That's how it was. We stood in the middle of that highway and felt the incredible heat from the fire even from a hundred feet away and just sorta... stared.

Later, we met some people at a restaraunt and watched the fireworks explode over the lake, but what sticks in my mind are the 18 hours before that. We still talk about that trip - how spontaneous it was, but also how it felt a little bit magic.... summer always sorta feels like that to me.

2. What is a favorite summer ritual of yours?


And driving -- anywhere, with almost anyone -- with all the windows down and the music up and our hair whipping everywhere and laughing and singing as loud as we can and not caring that people are looking because we're going somewhere, but we have nowhere at all to be.

3. After a long hot summer day, what is your favorite way to quench your thirst?

As I spent many of the warm months of my youth virtually submerged in various bodies of water (lakes, rivers, the ocean), most of my summers have served to teach me ways to dry out, not hydrate. But, as adulthood has caused me to have to abbreviate these happy days into weekend-long whirlwinds of fun, I still like to indulge the kid in me, who is alive and well.

And kids don't drink water. They eat lots and lots of watermelon.

4. The 4th of July is coming up, what plans, if any, do you have?

None yet. But, as can be seen from my answer to the first question, who needs plans? My best memories come from moments of spontenaity.

5. What are you looking forward to doing most before the summer ends?

Ends?! In the words of the Carpenters, it's "only just beguuunnn...."

June 17, 2005

From suburbia to the city: progressing to the pulse

I am moving, in 2 weeks, to the city.

Destination: a fantastic house (HUGE windows with a view, 2 bedrooms, a hugegantic kitchen -- more room to cook, which is good, because I love to cook, and many other exciting features (like a 10-minute commute) that you don't give a shit about. It's ok, you don't have to pretend.

This house is in Fremont...full of artists and students and conflict and color and life. I love being in the city.

I don't know how I survived on the Eastside so long. Don't get me wrong, I grew up there, and owe many of my greatest friends and experiences to that place. I've just reached a point where I am completely bored by it. And the city I live in now, Kenmore, is full of people I like to affectionately call Kenmorons.

What is exciting and challenging and unique about herds of 40-somethings commuting to and from jobs they hate with glassy eyes? Or the cheesy little smoke-filled bars where people argue about sports games and tell bigoted jokes too loud? Or the handful of people I went to high-school with who never left Bothell and have remained exactly, scarily, the same?

Or cul-de-sacs? The definition:

1. a street, lane, etc., closed at one end; blind alley; dead-end street.
2. any situation in which further progress is impossible.


So I'm ready. And I plan to partake in my very favorite celebration in Fremont this weekend to jump-start my relocation: the Fremont Solstice Fair.

You have seen nothing until you've seen this fair. Don't worry, I'll tell you all about it...