What have I been doing with my life? Clearly nothing that involves updating my blog. According to the New York Times, we have the Facebook to blame for this. All the kids are off blogs and onto the Facebook. It’s the drug of choice. It’s normally difficult to keep up, but I’m feeling practically adolescent with my lack of authoring.
The family is in a new home. Now if we can just get the bathroom sinks delivered from the factory, I can stop having to explain that the beard I’ve grown is a matter of function. No bathroom sink means no shaving. I can’t bring myself to shave in the shower. Too big of a project and I have too many other projects on my plate. Like deciding whether or not I like Helvetica for the address label on the new mailbox. Or obsessively employing geometry in my (to this point successful) hanging of perfectly level and spaced artwork.
The neighborhood is great. I can count among my neighbors some new friends, and they seem to enjoy making good margaritas. They seem to enjoy making babies, too, which means the kids have other kids their age to play with. It’s a long way from the days of driving forty-five minutes across Los Angeles to eat a hot dog and have a beer. And as the summer days and Texas heat rapidly approach, it’s nice to know we’re just a hop, skip and a jump (did I just write something that hokey?) away from the cool waters of Barton Spring Pool.
I hear the girl talking to her dolls. My coffee is getting cold, so it’s time to chug it down, hug the wife and get on with another great day in Austin.
Well, I did get a Kindle for Father’s Day. And yes, I do think it’s an elegant device. And no, I don’t think it will make the book go the way of the coal stove. I have been spending more time reading.
My hosting company has been in the process of an upgrade and while vacationing in beautiful Ocracoke, North Carolina I wasn’t able to make any updates for a while. But all the technical issues, as much as they were issues, which wasn’t that much, are fully resolved, and now I’m back in blogging mode.
For a while, I think that Twitter was taking away from my blog time. That and having a new baby daughter. She’s four months old, and with Henry turning three (three already!) tomorrow, my hands have been full, full, full.
I’m back. Now I just have to think of something interesting to say.
25 Things I Like About My Garage
- It’s my space, and no one bothers me about it
- The wedding poster that Yee Haw Industries made for our wedding in Athens, GA
- Red toolboxes
- A Consular license plate I found in the street
- The iPod dock I got from Google one year
- The Helen Stellar band poster from The Knitting Factory – The ink glows in the dark
- Found art, like the HollywoodandVince.com painting
- Screws and hardware organized in jelly jars, just like my grandfather in Tennessee
- Grid paper notebook from a stationery shop in Paris
- Collection of vintage holiday slides from Rome, picked up on eBay
- Vintage ceramic lamp base I found in a Goodwill in Los Feliz
- You can never have too much pegboard
- Plastic tray from Milan, Italy. I’ve never been to Milan
- Levels, squares and rules that keep everything ordered
- Back copies of ReadyMade magazines, just in case the spirit moves me
- A playlist on the iPod that has The The, The Grateful Dead, The Shins, The Jam and The Talking Heads
- Black & white photo my brother took in Kentucky
- Set of chisels and a Dremel for sculpting plaster
- Black sharpies and masking tape for labeling bins
- Rope and string and a guide to use to practice tying knots
- Rags made from old cargo pants that remind me of another time and place
- WD-40 and duct tape, which is a cure for warts and other ailment
- Wood glue, the secret to building anything from IKEA
- Candle from Ocracoke Candle Company that reminds me of my sister
- Beer caps from our first Christmas party, nailed to the wall beams
Okay, that was a bad reference to a bad 80’s song. I’ve been a little behind in my blogging these days as I’ve been over-reliant on Twitter. Especially easy to use is the Twitterberry application that I have on my Blackberry Curve.
I’ve noticed that my lack of blogging also seems to coincide with the financial turmoil. So like everyone else, I’ll blame “the Man” for my lack of activity on Left on Red. I’ve also been working a lot and haven’t been spending any office time updating the blog.
I guess I’ve been conspicuously lax in my political posting (not that I was ever really that active of a political blogger, frankly), but after all these months I’m not only decided, I’m ready to get the whole damn thing over with.
Yeah, I’m also a bad father since I’ve somehow managed to not post any Halloween pictures. I forgot my Blackberry at home on Halloween night, so I didn’t get the quick mobile-blogging photos I usually post. I think we snapped some with the camera, so if I ever get around to downloading those into iPhoto today, I’ll post something. Hmmm . . . I think there might be some office photos on the agency’s shared folder.
Where I am, at the end of the day
with energy saving bulbs and an old Mac forgotten.
Something familiar in a red toolbox,
oily and aged, something of my grandfather
in saving of old tape, glues drying in bottles like
reminders of past visits, or just time elapsed.
Dust and wood chips, screws on the floor and even cracked concrete
all remind me that there is work to do. Not here,
other places, and here. I have to go surfing
the long board is joining up with the Mac
and wondering if they are just saved
and fodder for nostalgia or useful
like pliers and hammers.
Too much sugar in my coffee this morning. Starting out too much on the sweet side. It’s hot already, the city has started to bake. A couple of guys get on the bus outside the India Sweet and Spice (how queer, the Sweet has been rubbed off the awning). They stand in the aisle next.to me, smelling of hair tonic and cardamom. “It’s going to be a long weekend, isn’t it?” I ask myself. I need to reach my destination slowly, the approach must be carefully timed to my thoughts. I have to leave some inspiration behind, in reserve, to brew for later tapping.
My friend Dana is again publishing an amazing blog at gogoraleigh.com
. He was out of the scene for a while, but is back this year with what I think should be recognized as one of the best, most comprehensive civic blogs I’ve ever read. Would someone give this guy a Webby
Everything from the highest level city development plans, to sports (he’s an admitted Carolina and general ACC basketball addict) to where the next chain restaurant is opening down to local music events, if there is anything you want to know about what’s happening in Raleigh, it’s here. Speaking of Raleigh, and the fantastic time we spent there with Caro’s friends and our families, if you want to see change happen fast, look at that place. If you think they’re only building high-rise luxury towers with downtown loft living in places like Manhattan, Atlanta and Los Angeles, well then think again. With an air of objectivity, the site feeds you some insight into the impact that development is having on economy, civic pride and local activism. Growth (and the sprawl that goes with it) isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and this site will give you some perspective to follow the impact of development on a mid-sized city. My aunt, who also lives in Raleigh, tells me developer greed is taking over there at the expense of sustainable and environmentally sound growth. It’s in these mid-size cities where you can really see how fast change and growth can happen. Interesting stuff.
This came up in a recent Google Alerts I have set to see when something with my name is published (okay, I know it sounds vain, but it’s really so I can figure out where people might be back-linking or posting about my blog). A recent Alert included this post about the name of a drink in the cocktail calendar I published at the end of the last millenium (sounds impressive, huh?). The American Dialect Society, as part of their ongoing work, is perhaps looking to seek out how terms like “Y2K” entered the American vernacular.
Coincidentally – given the years I spent doing my small part to help undermine the American economy by advertising subprime mortgages – the word subprime is the Society’s 2007 word of the year.
canvas | Eco Detour: Set the Record is the latest feature travel article by my friend and true inspiration, Bruce Northam. This article has Bruce exploring the labyrinthine maze of favelas in Rio de Janiero, where many of the city’s poorer residents live.
Caro surprised me with a trip down to Irvine to see David Sedaris read. Front and center! Photography wasn’t allowed, so I got this dumb shot of the podium before he came out. He was introduced by a local teen he found at the pre-reading book signing (she was running for Secretary of her school’s student council, and pronounced herself a supporter of the Newport Beach Public Library) before launching into an hour of reading. Most of it I’ve heard on NPR or read before in the New Yorker, but he ended the reading with recent entries from his diary, made while on a fact-finding trip to Japan. Funniest one being about a barber with crap (literally, feces) on his hand, and Sedaris’s attempt to get him to reveal his poop-smeared palm.
He read his New Yorker piece about buying weed while home in Raleigh for Christmas. I think at one point, Caro and I were laughing so hard, we started yelling “oh my god! oh my god!” at him, like he was doing some sort of personal reading for us. A consequence of sitting in the front row, just facing the reader and seeing no one in the audience behind us.
Sedaris is special to me and Caro; not because he’s from Raleigh, which is cool, but that we were both reading his book, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, when we met.