ace and stuff.

In the first installment of this series, I introduced you to Murray. Strong, silent Murray – my trusty companion.

I also mentioned the fridge in the garage, and told you that I hadn’t named the fridge. Well, I got called out on that one. I have actually named the fridge. It doesn’t have a proper name, like Bill or Wallace (but if it did, it would be a masculine name for sure…)
The fridge is named Man Fridge.
There are several reasons why it’s the Man Fridge – but the primary reason is because X2 would keep his beer in that fridge. Sometimes he’d have quite a bit of beer – we sometimes received presents from his brother-in-law, and sometimes he would brew his own and we’d have beer all over the place… so he got his own fridge, the Man Fridge.
After X2 moved out, the Man Fridge got a little bored, maybe felt a little left out even. It saw some action over the holidays, when we had 5 people living here for 2 weeks, and maybe a little action after that when my dad would make soups and whatnot and freeze everything and put it out in the Man Fridge. But since April, the Man Fridge has held some apples, and one container of frozen split pea soup.
So yesterday, I said goodbye to the Man Fridge. I donated it – they loaded it up in a matter of seconds and just like that – the Man Fridge was gone.
So now Murray has a little more leg room in the garage. And I will keep my apples in the house.
Sad to see it go, there were memories frozen in that fridge – but it feels good to let go and travel light.


haiku for single people, #3. and #2 redux.

Mathijs, the “true optimist,” has gotten me to change the name of this series of posts. But, being the unflagging optimist that he is, he didn’t want to stop there. He actually took the time to re-write my last haiku, with the idea of making it more positive.
Now, we need to cut Mathijs some slack on his first attempt – he is an exceptional computer programmer, but wrote his first haiku before looking up what a haiku actually was.
As a reminder, here is my original poem:

King sized bed, empty…
No snoring either, hooray!
Damn cat keeps me up.

And here is Mathijs’ poem, the happier version:

King sized bed, all by myself…
No snoring either, Hooray!
Cat loves this huge cuddle space with me.

Well, there’s my problem! I haven’t been thinking of my bed as a cuddle space lately! Thank you Mathijs for changing my perspective.

Now, anyone want to take a crack at #3??? This one is inspired by the anticipation of cooler weather & being a single homeowner:

Who cleans the gutters?
Could someone help with my sink?
Don’t all speak at once…


ace and stuff.

So I live by myself. I like living by myself – the only mess that’s around is MY mess. There’s no snoring to keep me awake. I can always have whatever I want for dinner. You know, those kinds of things. The kind of things that really, many of us might be happy to give up for the love and companionship of a good person… But in the meantime, I’ll make the most of the single livin’!

I’m often out and about, but I have to admit  – it does sometimes get a little quiet around the house. I have a cat, but she’s not all that great for conversation. What fun is someone who always silently agrees with whatever you say, while simultaneously giving you a very judgmental glare?

So yup, it’s just me and the cat. Sitting around the house. Being quiet. Thinking, mulling. Eating. Sleeping. I’m not surprised it’s gotten to this point – I’ve started talking to things around the house. And of course, they’re always referred to in the masculine gender.

First and foremost, there’s Murray – my big, sexy beast Murray. Every morning when I go get an apple out of the fridge in the garage (no, I haven’t named that yet), I say hello to my bad-ass Murray. He’s the strong, silent type. He never says hi back, but he’s always right there (no judgmental glares). And he literally takes me for a ride almost every day – but in a good way. He always sounds sooooo good – with his sexy Bose sound system.  I like a guy who will play good music for me.
I try to take good care of him, but thankfully he’s very forgiving, and hasn’t let me down yet. I may not give him presents as often as I should (I’ve forgotten our anniversary date), but I always have a kind word for him. He’s totally paid for – I OWN his ass. And we have an “understanding” – I can see other guys, when the opportunity presents itself. Pretty good setup, really.
I love you, Murray. Thanks for always being there.


**I’m pretty sure that at this point, I keep the apples in the garage just so I can say hi to Murray every morning. I’m going to sell that fridge soon – even so, I’ll probably keep poking my head in the garage every morning…


summary of today’s run.

Time: 05:10
Distance: 3.6 mi
Location: the hood
70F (!), clear, starry sky with the perfect crescent sliver of a waning moon

Mile 1
Song: White Light – Wilco
Comment: Wow, I’m not sure how much more I can take but Wilco is telling me things are alright…

Mile 2
Song: Ladies of the World – Flight of the Conchords
Comment: Sorry about that, rabbits (details will remain between me and the rabbits)

Mile 3
Song: Run Like an Antelope – Phish (studio version)
Comment: Working up to running 9 miles by the end of October is going to be interesting…

Mile 3+
Song: Eyes of the World – Grateful Dead, live, circa 1973-1974
Comment: This song makes me feel better every time (except for versions from the early 80’s when it sounded like even Bobby Weir was on coke).

Summary: Running at 5 a.m. parallels the rest of my life right now… it’s dark in places, I can’t really see where I’m going, but I trust that the surroundings are still there, and are solid – and if I keep going, things will change. And it’s definitely good to enjoy the journey. It can transform you.


buen camino, ace’s dad.

andrea and dad, 1970

Here is a picture of me and my Dad, taken, well – a long time ago. And here is a brief story of why I consider him a hero.

On December 7, 2010, I had to take my mom to the emergency room, and they told us she had cancer. Both of us somehow knew, even before that date, that something was terribly wrong – it was hanging in the air but had remained unspoken. Until that night of 12/7. My whole world as I knew it just dropped away and fell on the floor that night – never to be recovered…I remember calling my Dad in California and telling him. And I told him I didn’t know how I was going to get through this. I had no other family in Oklahoma; was separated from my husband. It was just me and my mom…
By the next day, he had offered to come out to Tulsa to be with us. He’s remarried – has been for many years . But he offered to leave that life behind for a while, and come help me get things in order. At first he was just going to stay until she could get some treatment for pain and things settled down a bit. But things never really settled down, and 13 weeks later she passed away. Those were the most awful, and longest, yet quickest 13 weeks of my entire life. I can’t even imagine what they were like for my mom.
My Dad essentially put his life on hold for 3 months and stayed with us – first through Christmas and New Year’s, when he was the driver who got my mom to her radiation treatments, doctor’s appointments, and pharmacies, while I tried to work. He then stayed through the blizzard in January, which left us essentially trapped, with no home health care help for a week – just him and me taking care of her in shifts. He stayed once we got her into Clarehouse, an end of life facility here in Tulsa. He stayed when it got to the point where I had stopped working completely because we had to be with her 24 hours a day and we both slept in the room with her – he slept in a chair, I slept on a day bed. He stayed till the very end. Then he stayed a week after her death, to help me try to start putting things back together again.
My parents were divorced when I was maybe 3 – so I don’t really have any memories of us being all together. He and I were never really very close while I was growing up. Maybe there’s been resentment on my part over the years for the fact that he left…but I can honestly say, any issues we had or feelings of resentment are completely gone. When I needed him the most, he was there for me. In a way that I cannot ever repay.
I think all 3 of us tried to forgive each other for any pain we may have caused, although my mom held on to a lot of resentment and anger up till the very end, and we were never able to talk about it. I don’t want to live my life that way – I won’t wait until I’m on my death bed to let go of things that no longer matter anyway. How great to forgive and be forgiven. Now, between me and my Dad, it’s all good. We have shared a pilgrimage.
Buen Camino, Dad.
mom and dad
**note: there are A LOT of other people whom I’d like to thank for their help during this time also, including but not limited to:
M Neil, for letting me borrow my Dad for 3 months
S Torrez, for the late nite shift
J & D Zaremba, for the best last Xmas & New Year
Clarehouse staff, for their patience & calm presence
All the family out there (Tiff, Tanya, Lisa, Bill, Chris, Jesse, the Coppolas) for checking up on me
M McClendon, for listening
T Libasci, for that harrowing ride in the snow
C & T Crowe, for the food deliveries
D Workman, for being SuperDayl
K Bates, for the kind words
Y Maruoka for the love, cranes & cookies from Japan
K Yutani, for the present from Berlin
J Umansky & parents, for the flowers to brighten the room
All my mom’s friends & past co-workers who reached out to us to offer support and condolences
Everyone who donated to Clarehouse (