A Book Of One’s Own: People And Their Diaries by Thomas Mallon (this book, oddly enough, caught my eye in our new discovery of a used bookstore, Book Trader on Market, and, on looking at the table of contents, it turns out that I’ve read it before, loved it and then… what? Sold it? Gave it away? Swallowed it in my sleep? In any case, it was excellent both times and this time I shall take great care not to lose it. It’s a fascinating, delightfully written description of all kinds of diaries that he loosely organizes into these very evocative chapters: Travelers, Pilgrims, Prisoners, etc. And I now have a list of out-of-print books that I want. A book that leads to more books. Epic win!)
They ought not be allowed to play Eleanor Rigby on the radio on such cold, bleak, rainy days as this one. Unless they immediately follow it with Rufus Wainwright’s April Fools. Way to walk me to the brink, dangle me over the edge and snatch me back, Radio Gods!
I forgot to tell you something interesting! Walking down 18th, right below Logan Circle, a couple of days ago, I thought I saw Jake R. from Spur. Catching up to him, it turns out, I did! I did! I did see Jake R., who was accompanied by his pregnant wife, Dana, his friend Ram and Ram’s wife, Heather, carrying their baby, Cole. We walked a few blocks together and caught up very briefly. Dana is one of those frustrating people whom I liked so much and wanted to get to know better and never did. I liked Jake much better when I heard they were dating! It showed there was more to him than I had known. Ram, who carries intact the unfailing sweetness that always distinguished him, and Heather, who I can’t quite place but who I know I liked, are well and living in Jersey. It was good to see them and it was also good that I am moving past shame or embarrassment that I am not further along in my career than I am. All of my friends are accomplished and intelligent and some are cutting quite a dash in the outside world, but they are also hardworking people reaping the benefits of that work and thoughtful people doing their best to live with integrity, so envy really is beside the point; I am, after all, trying to do the same (minus the hard work and the reaping and the accomplished!). And I may yet have something to show for myself and these days my time doesn’t feel quite so short as it used to.
On a very different note, we have entered into a new period in our lives: The Era of Brushing Our Teeth With Baking Soda. I will ask the dentist about it the next time I see him, but it’s a shame to think that I will not completely trust his answer. However, I like him very much because he has never pushed me towards whitening, as so many dentists do these days, and hopefully he will approve. All the toothpastes we checked list baking soda or some variation thereof as their only active ingredient, so it seems to make sense only use that. I may fool around with making a paste of some kind with mint oil and hydrogen peroxide, but for the time being, just wetting the brush and dipping it into the soda works fine and feels good. And you can’t recycle toothpaste containers, so to hell with them!
Also, did I tell you about the salad water? I often heard, and recently confirmed with 2 reliable sources, that boiling vegetables washes away most of the nutrients, but we don’t have a steamer. So, until we get one, I pour the boiling water into a jar and keep it in the fridge and drink it instead of regular water. M.F.K.Fisher said to use it for soups and broths, but I don’t make them often enough to use it all. Beet water is tasty warm, like tea, asparagus water is better icy cold and green bean water has no taste at all. Who knows if it’s any good but it won’t do any harm and when you’re as inimical to vegetables as I am, every little bit helps.
I just watched the video for April Fools and then Rufus’ cover of Across the Universe, which combined several of my favorite things: The Red Balloon, Magritte, Rufus Wainwright and Across the Universe (even though I never like his covers as much as his originals). How did I miss this when it came out? I don’t miss music videos, but these justified themselves.