This Week.

Standard

This Week was also Birthday Week, which ended up wonderful after a rough start. On Tuesday evening, the snow and ice came back to make things interesting. Our neighborhood saw a few inches of snow, and the roads iced up overnight, so I was back to the bus commute on Wednesday morning.

But the week ended with an extended birthday celebration involving sushi dinner, well-wishes and gifts, two brunches, Star Wars, model trains, and reading books by the fire on a rainy evening. It was just what I wanted.

Occupations

Due to the inclement weather and lots of meetings, I didn’t make much progress on my work projects. I did, however, make lots of progress on fretting over how much progress I wasn’t making on my work projects. I also gave my task list several meaningful glances.

Diversions

On the Page

On the Screen

We are done, so done, with Season 3 of “Outlander” and jumped right into Season 7 of “Homeland”. I find myself wishing that the series had ended with Season 3.

We finally saw “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and I enjoyed that mess quite a bit, especially how it added nuance to most of the main characters. It tried to add nuance to Kylo Ren, it really did, but there isn’t much to do about that pathetic man-child. At least we got Emo Kylo Ren out of it.

On the (Figurative) Turntable

Kimbra’s new single, “Version of Me”, dropped this week. I love it!

In the (Literal) Game Room

Our friend Mike came over and we played “Ex Libris”, a game about being gnomish librarians collecting magical texts, and if that sounds like that game is right up my Diagon Alley, that’s because it absolutely is.

One of my birthday presents from FunkyPlaid was Scrabble Typography, which I am eager to play!

7B8341BF-7F6A-4FAE-A9EE-B927AD538416

Related: I no longer attempt to play Scrabble, Words With Friends, or any word-building games online. I’m miserable at keeping up with asynchronous multiplayer games, especially multiple ones at the same time. So if I have ever accepted your invitation to play, made it three rounds, and disappeared … that’s why.

I did start playing a puzzle adventure game on my iPad called “Rusty Lake Paradise” which is unsettling and strange and very good so far.

On the Internet

The best thing I read online this week was “The Problem with the ‘What Else?’ Mindset” by Jocelyn K. Glei because of this quote:

You could witness the most precious moment of someone’s life, or read a news story about a horrifying and terribly sad event, or complete one of the most impressive accomplishments of your creative career… And somehow it’s never enough.

On the Globe

The Portmeirion Village webcams have been taken down. 😢 I will have to find a new magic window to peep through.

Ink o’ the Week

2016-10-30-21-02-32-2

This Week.

Standard

Hey, it’s this week’s This Week! I’m on industrial-grade antibiotics! I don’t have an intro!

Occupations

I do this thing where I let myself get Super! Excited! about something, painfully excited, that excitement that is all shiny sparkling hummingbird buzzing with all of the good possibilities that the something may bring. I convince myself that everyone else involved is also Super! Excited! and it is so cool to share that feeling, you know it is.

And then the next day, I realize that I’m the only person that is Super! Excited! about the thing because everyone else has other stuff going on and I get hugely bummed out.

At the beginning of January, I let myself get Super! Excited! about a potential writing group. Then it didn’t seem to pan out the way I thought it would: huge bummer. But a new writer friend and I are forging ahead with a biweekly meeting date at a local café. If no one else shows up, we’ll at least have a few hours of focused writing time. Or chat. 🙂

I had another Super! Excited! moment at work recently when I became the subject selector for my library’s science fiction and fantasy collection. (Just typing the sentence makes my head explode a little.) But nothing can bum me out about that. Nothing.

Diversions

On the Page

On the Screen

FunkyPlaid and I are almost through Season 3 of “Outlander” which has managed to make high-seas pirating boring. Last season made 18th century Paris boring. Paris! It’s not a good trend.

We recently re-watched “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and it was even better than I remembered. I can’t wait to see “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”. I’m also really looking forward to “Black Panther”!

On the (Figurative) Turntable

I hope I am never blasé about Spotify surprising me with gorgeous music I haven’t heard before. “Butterfly” by Snowpoet appeared in my life today and … yep.

 

In the (Literal) Game Room

We had friends over and played Love Letter and Jungle Speed. One of these games is calm and methodical and the other involves sprained fingers and hysterical laughter. Both are really, really fun. Play them instead of Monopoly or Risk. They are great games that won’t make you hate your friends.

On the Internet

I lost my social media mojo a while back, but I post wee updates and photos to my microblog, Honk. (Thanks to FunkyPlaid for the name!)

On the Globe

We’ve just started planning our trip to Scotland this April! I cannot wait to see everyone and everything and take a million photos and eat proper curry.

Ink o’ the Week

It is snowing right now (WTF, Portland?) so my TWSBI Eco is loaded with Kaweco Summer Purple. Wishful writing!

Homesick.

Image

crisper

Over the past two days I’ve had three different conversations about my life in Scotland. By the time I got in my car to drive home, I was deeply homesick for it, mostly the friends and coworkers I miss, but also mundane bits like Christmas Eve in Waitrose, random herds of curious horses, learning how to ride the bus in a foreign land, and frost-covered moss. I was thinking of that moss when I encountered the frost-dusted leaf in this photo.

Homesickness is generally expressed as a one person, one place phenomenon, but I have experienced waves of homesickness for every place I’ve ever lived. I even yearn for Alabama from time to time, especially the late afternoon summer thunderstorms that shake the magnolia trees, all slick green and heavy cream. Does it make me feel fickle sometimes? Sure. Someone once excoriated my use of the word “favorite” because, in his words, “They can’t all be favorites.”

Can’t they?

Writing from: a quiet study in Portland, Oregon. Listening to: “Trains” by Poppy Ackroyd.

Bloom off the rose.

Image

tough

I don’t mean to eavesdrop on the breakup. My earbuds are in but I’ve woken up with a start, and the podcast that I was listening to has ended. I don’t have noise-canceling earbuds, so if there isn’t anything playing I can hear everything going on around me.

She’s telling him a version of “it’s not you; it’s me,” and it is long-winded and involves a mention of her “journey” and I get whiplash from cringing so hard.

He sits there and stares at his trainers on the rubber ridges of the bus floor. (Getting dumped on a bus is pretty bad; getting dumped while sitting in the sideways seats is worse. Every movement of the bus is shoving you into the last person you want to touch.) Occasionally he turns to her with a tearful glare but he cannot look at her for long.

She keeps talking, mostly too soft to hear. She reaches for his hand, and he does not move away, but his hand is prey, playing dead, while she swoops and takes.

Writing from: a quiet study in Portland, Oregon. Listening to: “Take On Me – 2017 Acoustic” by a-ha. Sometimes I miss taking the bus to work.

Encyclopedia Brown and Mister Rogers.

Image

travelersnotebooks

About that writing offline I mentioned yesterday

I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t obsessed with notebooks. The first notebook I remember loving so hard that I wore it down to a floppy nub was spiral-bound with an orange cover. In my notebook I wrote down a lot of facts that I thought Encyclopedia Brown would need to know if he ever needed my help to solve one of his cases.

Now I carry two Traveler’s Notebooks: one for work, and one for creative projects. I like having this separation between the two worlds. When I switch between notebooks, I feel like Mister Rogers trading his jacket and dress shoes for a cardigan and trainers.

Writing from: a quiet study in Portland, Oregon. Listening to: Spotify’s Winter Classical playlist.