Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Brown Paper Bag Day. Some People Call Them Fragments.

Do you dream of your blog? I do. Last night I dreamed I wrote a post and the picture that accompanied it was a picture of Owen in his little seat in one of the seats of the Opera House. That sort of sums it up. And I don't have a picture like that but I do have pictures of Owen (that one was taken yesterday) and I do have pictures of the Opera House but I can't find them and I feel frantic today to get things done so there you go. You get Owen and if that's not enough, sue me and examine your heart.

So this is going to be what I call a brown paper bag day- I give you all a bunch of stuff and I throw it in a paper bag and hand it over. Think of it as the surprise bag you can buy at the Dollar Store marked "Girl" or "Boy" only this one is for everyone who wants it. Of course what it really means is that I am too scattered to sit down and write what I would call an essay and my mind is flittering about like a moth on the light bulb at night and I can feel the presence of a toad, just waiting for that moth to hit the light, sizzle, and fall into his mouth.
Yum. Cooked moth.

So the reason the Opera House is in my mind is that this weekend is the reading thing we're doing with Robert Olen Butler from his book Mr. Spaceman. Tickets are not flying and Jan is a bit panicky. I understand. This was her idea, she arranged it and people are not responding. Well, Jan- let me tell you this- it was and is a GREAT idea and even the author thought so and agreed to participate and it'll be what it'll be and it's going to be fun.
But for any of you living in this area, you might want to consider driving down Highway 90 on Friday or Saturday until you get to Monticello, pull over, park (anywhere) when you get to the Opera House- you will know it- it's right before you get to the County Courthouse on your right- and join us. Dinner? Available. Drinks? Always. Ghosts? Probably. Me? I'll be there.
Wearing make-up AND a bra!
Oh yeah, so will Mr. Butler. Be there, I mean. I don't think he wears a bra although I don't know about the make-up.

Okay. On to chickens. When I went out to the hen house this morning to take Betty outside so that she can spend the day without being pecked by Sam, her former Lover Man Rooster, she jumped right off the roost and ran outside. Bless her tiny chicken heart. It's raining right now so I made her a sort of shelter outside with a roof and some hay so that she'll have a place to get under. Poor baby. She is starting to try to follow me back to the house now. She thinks I'm her flock. Either that, or those grapes I cut up for her daily are making her fall in love with me. Either way, it was nice to see her so cheerfully head outside where she spends her day scratching and dirt-bathing and finding tasty bug and frog morsels.

Bobby Bowden has retired. Who the fuck is Bobby Bowden? Simply the God of Tallahassee, aka the FSU Seminole football coach. Well, he was the God until he started losing regularly whereupon everyone turned on him like mad dogs and let's face it- dude is about a hundred years old. Now I don't give one damn shit about football or Seminoles yet even I have not been able to ignore this situation. And when I got the paper this morning, the entire front page was dedicated to the fact that yes, he has finally decided to go to his palacial home, dandle his grandbabies on his knee and let someone else take over the job of coaching. And it wasn't just the front page. It was like THE ENTIRE PAPER!

Could we move past this?

Also Tiger Woods. Bless HIS heart. What? He's human? No fucking way. Do I need to know the details of that little incident? No. I do not. Could we shut up about it already?
Obviously, no.

I've recently reconnected with an old friend who is a much beloved figure in Tallahassee and actually, all over the world. She's a singer and because she is somewhat of a celebrity, I have always been shy around her. And it always seemed to me that people wanted something from her. Either to play this benefit or that, or to sing on their CD or to hang her name on their project, and me? I didn't want her to think I wanted her for any reason like that and so I sort of let her go. Besides singing she also taught English at the local community college for like fifty years and raised a son on her own and was one of the first black teachers hired at the college and her plate has been FULL. But now she's retired from the college and she's doing what she wants to do and she called me the other day and we talked for about an hour a a half and now she's reading the blog and let me tell you- The Church of the Batshit Crazy has Another Official Vocalist now. Lis, of course, is our first. (Ladies, is this okay with you?) When this woman opens her mouth to sing, the hairs raise up on the back of your head and your heart bursts into flames and the tears run down your face. And you know what? I'm not even going to mention her name because in a way, that would be using her too. So, Sweetie- you know who you are. I'm so glad you're back in my life.

Okay. What else?
Oh yes. In other music news, Lis's CD is almost completely done. I can't wait until I can sell it from here. Lon was in Tallahassee yesterday, mixing it, and he called me on his way home to see if he could stop by for coffee and a hug. I was about to take Owen to his mama so I didn't have the time, but when I talked to him, I told him how incredibly proud I am of him for supporting his wife in this project and for working so hard on it with her. I cried. I always cry when I talk to Lon and usually when I talk to Lis, too. Why is that? Because I love them so much. That's why. Anyway, he said it had been his glory to work on this CD and I said that of course it was, but a lot of men in this world do not support their wives the way he does and he said, "Well, I'm sorry to hear that."
And I cried some more.
God, I love those two people.

And Kathleen- my darling Kathleen! She hit an eight-point buck on her way home in the dark the other night and it tore up her car and hurt her already injured shoulder and no one in this entire world would be more apt to be upset about killing a deer. It's rutting season (What? there's a season? I thought rutting season was 365 days a year. Wait- that's just humans. And bonobos.) and the buck was crossing the road to get to the other side where the beautiful lady deer were bedded down in the field. It all came out okay, although Mr. Moon was not in town to come and take care of things, which had always been her plan if she hit a deer (Kathleen has plans in place for every contingency) so she had to call the sheriff and it was all okay. A man came by who wanted the deer for meat and she gave it to him and the sheriff said he would have taken it but he was on duty and couldn't. We do love our deer meat down here. Except for Kathleen who doesn't eat meat, of course, but she was happy that it would not go to waste. She went to the doctor yesterday and he gave her a fine panoply of muscle relaxers and pain medication (and here again, Kathleen is not a pill taker and really only wanted a prescription to get a massage) but she's taking some time off of work which she needed anyway and is resting. So bless HER heart. Mr. Moon was a little jealous when he heard about the accident. Kathleen's buck was bigger than the one he shot this year. Well, not bigger than the one in Canada, but in Florida. If has shot a buck. I get confused on that.

Speaking of which, I have a deer backstrap thawing that I need to get into the Crock Pot. Owen isn't here today and I miss him but I have a million things to catch up on and this has gone on way too long.

I feel like I should include a recipe here because all of this is so down-home and newsy but I don't have one springing to mind. I will remind you to eat your vegetables and get your fiber, drink your water and move your body.

I will also tell you that my children were and are my greatest teachers and have saved my life and soul and that my grandson is doing the same thing for me. I will say again that the Opera House has also been there and given me something I could not have gotten anywhere else and as nervous as I was to read in front of The Author last night, there is some part of me which has been made strong and confident in that old building by the people who have taken me in there and I am in amazement at every single element of that fact.

I will tell you that it's not how many friends you have, it is the love you have for the friends you have. Fuck Facebook and thousands of "friends." That ain't friendship and we all know it. Well, not for me, anyway.

I will tell you that the older I get, the more I know without any doubt that my marriage to Mr. Moon has been the greatest gift I could ever have received. His love and the love of my children has more than made up for whatever bad has happened in my life.

And I will tell you that this December day where it is not cold but is raining and where the frogs are croaking back in the swamp and the water drips off the tin roof into the azaleas beside the porch is a day I wish I could put in my memory forever. There is nothing at all special about it except for the fact that I am here in it, I am doing what I love which is to write about it all, and right now, a bird is singing his heart out in the wisteria, despite the rain.

So. Brown Paper Bag. Here it is. Take what you need, and you leave the rest.



  1. That almost last paragraph about frogs and swamp and tin roof? I lust after that sensory experience.

  2. I am still rebelling against the notion of being a participant on Facebook, and still find it creepy in a way I cannot completely describe. So, shoot me.

  3. I love this post! It is just perfect. So many things going on. I'm sorry I will miss the performance, but I know it will be awesome.
    I love you.

  4. Steph- I am drowning in it. It is coming down in sheets.

    Nicol- Nope. I will not shoot you. Each to her own. It's just not me. At all.

    May- And I forgot to write about the ten minutes of the Victoria's Secret fashion show I saw last night. Whoops! (Long story short: WTF???!!!)

    Ms. Bastard- I love you too, you crazy genius woman.

  5. Oh, thank you for the brown bag lunch, all I have is raisins, an apple and a dumb WW meal. So I ate every bit of your offering right here from the desk at the little library. Right at lunch time too. Thank you. And yay for wonderful new/old friends and everything else that you write about so beautifully and that makes you happy happy. You make me happy.

  6. Sometimes it's all so jumbled up that you have to write it down to make sense of it all, or at least to keep a sort of running tally of what you have going on in your head.
    I'm glad all is well in Lloyd!

  7. You're right - I am MAJOR crazy about the low numbers. Did you hear ROB tell me last night that the small numbers were okay with him because he's already a member of the zero club - several times? That's when you have a book reading/signing at a store and no one shows. How generous of him to share that. I really appreciate everyone's attitude about this and, yes, we will have fun - and present a good evening's entertainment.
    I didn't know you knew PL, but then I shouldn't be surprised. You are connected to so many talented people. And she is incredible! Her voice makes my knees weak. Okay, I'm breathing deeply. Love you.

  8. PS - What a great picture of Owen!

  9. I am perhaps just a little too sensitive in all areas of life today, but that picture of Owen? Made me cry; the mental image of Miss Betty falling in love with you? Same thing. Hitting a deer, well, that bites and I am glad Kathleen is okay, but I don't much care for deer so that didn't make me cry. You will be so fine at the performance, and I hope some day to be traveling on that road and will stop at the opera house and say, "Ms. Moon was here," and feel so pleased that I might, in fact, cry.

  10. love this post..and love the idea of a chicken falling in love for you and your grapes...:-)

  11. Bethany- And you make me happy. So thank-you.

    Rachel- It is my head that is jumbled up!

    Jan- Ain't Owen darling? I do so love that little man. Of course I know Ms. P! And how telling is it that you knew who she was without me even naming her. Yep. I know lots of incredibly talented people. I am a Patron of the Artists.
    And we're going to be FINE this weekend. Small and intimate might be the most fun of all. You know?
    Love you too. See you tonight.

    Kori- I am sorry you are crying at everything! And honey child, if you are ever traveling close enough to stop at the Opera House you better be with ME!

    Danielle- Well. You know me and my hens. I do love them. Especially the underdogs, the scrappy littlest ones.

  12. I know who the singer is you are talking about and you are right in your description of her voice. She is amazing! I wish I could go to the Opera House and watch this weekend, but I am babysitting (what else is new?).

  13. sigh*

    i wish i could be there with you at the opera house too...

  14. This Tiger Woods thing is the most boring thing I've been forced to witness since the advent of, well, golf.

  15. I enjoyed everything you put into the brown paper bag for us today. A little laughter, a little tear. No wonder you make us all feel like you have cut up grapes for us to eat too.

  16. Oh, I really like that, what Michele said, about the grapes. So true! And I have to keep my crazy chicken love in check!

  17. Lois- Well, when your kids go out, make them come to Monticello! Ha! Have fun with the kidlings.

    Danielle- Hell, it's only a plane ride. Across the ocean. Come on!

    Daddy X- I tend to agree.

    Michele Renee- Thank-you!
    I suppose that is what I was doing.

    Bethany- I have to keep mine in check too. I'm insane about those chickens.

  18. That is exactly it for me as well. Marriage to an amazing man, and my love for my amazing children has made up for all the crap. All of it. That's it exactly. That's my favourite bit from the bag, but I'll just take the rest as well, because I'm greedy that way.

  19. What Mwa said.

    And I've pretty much decided that I'll read whatever you write. You're good Ms. Moon, incredibly powerfully good.

  20. Wow. That was brown bag!

    I'm glad you got that surprise phone call! I wonder how she, and many old friends are doing, and I'm not sure why I don't make more of those outreach calls.

    Glad Kathleen is ok. How traumatic! Poor Kathleen. Poor Lady deer. Poor Mr. Moon... :-(

    I adore Ms Betty and her bedraggled chicken head and neck hanging in the breeze! She is the friendliest ole chicken I ever did see... well, besides Red.

    Yay Lon and Lis! woohoo~!

    Great post. Very fun.
    Stay dry,

  21. PS
    That picture of Owen is too sweet. I love his expression. I'm going to nab one for me!
    xo pf

  22. I often have to write posts like this. I call them randoms. There are plenty of days that I cannot get my brain to settle on just one thing.

    Thanks for stopping by my page today. It made me smile!

    I wish I lived closer. I would be at the opera house in a heartbeat! The Husband and I were just trying to figure out what to do for date night this weekend!

  23. sniff sniff...

    I'm trying so hard to smell Owen's head...


  24. Lucy- Isn't he?

    Mwa- You can have it all, dearheart.

    Deb- Oh stop it. I'm blushing.

    Ms. Fleur- I sent you an e-mail. I hope you got it. And you should have seen poor, wet, bedraggled Betty. She looked even more needy than ever. But she's so cheerful! What a chicken!

    Ms. Dish- I wish you could come to the Opera House, too!

    Michelle- Isn't it funny how every baby smells different and yet they all smell so damn good? Mmmmm. I didn't get to smell Owen all day. Tomorrow, though, I will smell him all day long.

  25. I need Owen badly. If I were around we would take turns spoiling him rotten -you are doing a good job Grandmere, just fine- but I bet he would love to have two for the price of one. Days like today I need to face a pair of eyes filled with wonderment, kiss the little piggy toes, and sing him to sleep with some old lullabies that I know sooth the soul. Sending you love so you can give some of my love to him.

  26. Allegra- I will gladly send you pictures but I know it's not the same. I wish you were here to spoil him with me. Right now all that amounts to is holding him all the time and that is the sweetest thing I can imagine. He cries, but he soothes and he does so love to be sung to. And he loves to go outside and look at the trees and he is starting to look at the chickens although I am sure he has no idea what he is seeing. But he will. And every day he changes and every day I love him more and yes, you need an Owen. I would joyfully share mine. I hope you sleep well tonight under this full moon.

  27. That is the most amazing picture of Owen. He looks wise and sweet at the same time.

    You always have so much going on. And it's all interesting. If I had to tell what I did in a day, folks would mostly fall asleep.

    Good that you appreciate the good and let go the bad.

    I appreciate your comments at Hill Country Mysteries. The positive approach and the humor and the offbeat perspective. Thank you.

  28. Those eyes of little Owen are so bright and filled with joy. I could hardly take my eyes off the photo to read your post,but I did and I loved it as usual.

  29. Ms. Moon you are an incredible writer, you know. But just in case you don't, I'll say it again. You are an incredible writer!

  30. I'm so proud to have you as my mama.

    I love you so much!

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  32. This post is a wonderful example of why I read your page, every day, every post.

    It's always great when you can re-connect with friends you've lost touch with and still have that closeness.

  33. What a lovely gift. I love grab bags!

  34. Kathleen- Same here, dear.

    Elizabeth- He has charmed me.

    Angie- Oh honey. Thank-you.

    HoneyLuna- And I am so proud to have you as my daughter. I love you so...Mama

    Justme- Every stage is fascinating. To me, at least.

    Ginger- Isn't it? A little miracle.

    Jeanne- Don't we all love grab bags?


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.