Ernest Hemingway:

As Ernest Hemingway once said...
'All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.'

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

yet another subset of st. louis i never knew existed

Last night, after our bi-monthly meeting, the girls in my writing group and I went to check out an open mic night hosted by the St. Louis Writers' Guild. It happened to be held at a bar literally feet away from where we usually meet in South City, so we figured what the heck?

It was...interesting. To say the least. It was apparently their 'loudmouth' version of open mic night, which means pretty much anything goes. And go it did last night. It started off with an awkward poet who left a lot to be desired. Bless his heart, he got up there and read his stuff, which takes a lot of guts, but whew. Not a great start. It only picked up from there, though. The next guy apparently is practicing to be a stand up comic, so between his routine he read a vulgar poem of sorts about vagina shortening (the procedure, not a spray-on-Pam type of sex toy, as he explained). He had his moments, but he definitely thought he was a lot funnier than he was.

He was followed by both poets and short story writers, as well as a novelist, reading a chapter from her work-in-progress. It was a small crowd, so we were accosted from the beginning about whether we were there to read. We politely declined. We had to case the joint first.

We sat at a table in back with another first-timer, a very pleasant PhD student who moved here in July. During break a seasoned poet, and quite the character, came to scope us out and get our story. I can honestly say I've never met anyone quite like him. He's been published in 45 magazines, looked like a beatnick, and had traveled all over the world. Yes, we learned all of this within the span of 5 minutes. Then, one of the organizers, a sweet older man, came over to apologize for the resident 'comedian' and his tomfooleries. We were instantly taken by him - he was so darn pleasant, and had a sense of humor to boot. There seemed to be such camaraderie amongst these folks, it was really comforting. I definitely felt as though I could have read there and been wholly accepted, whether I was good or not. And believe me, there was some talent there, both in poetry and fiction. One girl wrote a story so darn funny at one point I was wiping tears from my eyes. That's serious.

As we got up to leave they thanked us for coming, and made us promise to read the next time we attended. If we attend again, that is. I think we all enjoyed it. Enough to get up and read our work? Only time will tell.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

open letter to earth

Hey earth? You're killing me right now. First of all, the weather is hot as h-e-double hockey sticks. 90s in late September? Come on. There better be some really good weather in store to make up for this bullshit. It better not be in the 50s next week for highs.

And about this time change thing. Boy do I love me some daylight savings time. When it rolls around in the spring I'm happy as a pig in shit (and they shit a lot, by the way). It's the start of something great - longer days, sunny weather, warmth - it's beautiful. I tolerate it in the fall as it means the beginning of winter, which I love in a very different way. I'm like a small child when it snows (or even threatens to snow) - very excited. I like warm clothes, fat comforters, slippers, and cozy blankets, not to mention chili, roasts, and hot soup. Mmmmmmmm.

However, what the fuck is happening in the sky right now? It's pitch black when I get up in the morning. Is this some sort of joke? How can I get up and get ready for work when it still seems like the middle of the night? Even my dog looks at me like I'm an evil axe murderer when I go in her room (yes she has her own room) and turn on the light so I can get clothes (yes my clothes are in the dog's room...that's what happens when you have too many clothes). Small children are walking to school in the dark. What if the evil sex offender living down the street that my internets tells me about snags them right from the sidewalk? How could you let that happen?

Mostly though I'm complaining at the incredible sadness that occurs when my alarm goes off in the pitch blackness. And now I have to wait until November for that to change. I cannot deal with this for another month and a half.

Earth, why you gotta be so cruel?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

being all outdoorsy

Whew. Camping this past weekend was a blast. We, along with ten other people or so, went up to a friend's parents' house near Mark Twain Lake. They've got a huge house with a ton of property, and were nice enough to let us all camp in their yard. It's amazing up there. The weather was incredible, which helped, but seriously, their place blew my mind. It's exactly what I want (trade the huge house for a modest one - let's be realistic). They've got a pond, land rented out to a farmer (currently soybeans are planted), and a fantastic garden. They get up every morning and go fishing out on Mark Twain Lake then spend the rest of the day moseying about in their sweet five-wheeler (similar to the one below).
How cool is that? They can hunt and fish, and she grows everything from peppers to pumpkins to huge zucchinis, even hops (for our friend's homebrew). Man, did it stir up that part of me who wants that life more than anything. Of course, I'd have to have some cows, chickens, and goats with all of that land. Deeelicious.
It also reminded me that I want to learn how to deer hunt. Crazy, I know. If I would have told my 18 year old self (hell, even my 25 year old self) that I'd be thinking of hunting deer at age 30, they would have probably passed out from shock. The only drawback is that to get a permit one has to take a MO Dept of Conservation class. It's either 3 weeknights or two full weekend days. So, that requires (1) me remembering to sit down with the hub (who also wants to learn to hunt) (2) pulling out the laptop and a list of classes (3) managing to find classes that can squeeze into our busy lives this time of year (4) signing up for said classes.
That's a lot of steps.
But, we're running out of time. Gun season starts in November. And not only do we have to get permits, but I have to learn to shoot a gun. I've only done it once. Luckily I gots lots of friends who hunt. Mostly I want to do this for the meat, not because I like stalking and killing things. Though I might. One never knows until one tries. This could open up a very scary can of worms.
I envision this not happening until next year. We'll see.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


I'm having trouble finding an excuse to write - anything, really. I can't think of anything to write here, and certainly can't seem to make myself write any fiction at all. The rest of my writing group feels the same way - or at least they did. We've been AWOL for a few months now. Perhaps it's the nice weather, and having too many things to do outside. I don't know. It's weird. I definitely think about writing, I just can't seem to make myself do it. Hopefully that will change. I'm having thoughts of starting a novel again, though it didn't get me far on my last attempt. One of these days it will click. Just have to keep plugging along.

The weather has cooled off. I love it. It's finally time to open the windows. I'm sure my dog is hating life right now (she acts as though we're killing her if the temperature in the house is even one degree warmer than usual), but it's just too nice at night. We're camping with a group of friends (new friends, must be on best behavior - yeah right) this weekend, and it's supposed to dip down into the lower forties. That's the best camping weather ever. And supposedly they'll have a huge bonfire, so that will be perfect.

The hub and I are completely obsessed with Deadwood as of late. We're watching the series from the beginning from Netflix. I like it this way - we don't have cable (read: we're too cheap), so instead of waiting week to week for a new episode, we can inhale them as fast as the mailman can bring them. We're both fascinated with the West during that time period. The characters are so great and have incredible depth. I can't decide which I like best. We're still in the first season, and boy, I will be so sad when it's over. Maybe as sad as I was after watching the last Freaks & Geeks (oh Judd Apatow, how I love thee). I didn't think it was possible.

It's sunny, cloudless actually, and around 75 right now, and time cannot go slower. It's nearing in on go time though, and I can't wait to get outside. This time of year kills me. It's damn near impossible to sit here at work all day when the weather is this nice and stare out the window. One day I will not be stuck in an office all day, I'll be able to enjoy this whenever I want. One day...

Thursday, September 06, 2007

what I'm drinking (and it's not beer...for once)

I'm currently drinking the Green Dragon variety of Honest tea with passion fruit.* It's delicious. Thanks to CB & V, who are addicts themselves, I've turned into a gigantic iced tea addict. I've always been on good terms with tea, but it's gone to a whole new level - to the point of actually wondering whether I'm overdoing it on the green tea little bit (this is apparently possible).

On the flip side, I'm drinking WAY less soda. In fact, the last soda I remember having was this past weekend - Dr. Pepper obtained from Taco Bell along with my three bean (no meat!) tacos. I've even taken to drinking tea when we go out to eat as opposed to soda (other than the previously mentioned Dr. Pepper - it was to mix with rum). I've been trying to kick the soda habit for a while now. The diet varieties just don't fit into my no-artificial-sweetner kick, and regular soda is chock full of calories and high fructose corn syrup (another thing I'm trying to avoid).

Folks who know me will understand how big a deal this is. I've been a soda addict for as long as I can remember. In college, my roomie (and new mom! hi!) Hammertime and I existed on soda (close your eyes mom and dad - and alcohol). Water was not in our vocabulary. We'd even trade in our leftover meal plan points for twelve packs. The past few years or so I've tried to limit myself to one a day, which was pretty good.

So I'm happy I've found a beverage to replace soda. I like it almost as much! And the best part is that I like it unsweetened (not that I will discriminate against sweetened). It's good for you, and low in calories. Perfect. And so refreshing. I like to brew my own iced green tea with a sprig of fresh mint from the yard. Mmmmmmm.

*Yes, I am strangely obsessed with beverages of any kind. See the previous entry. It's a running joke between the hub and I - when we go to the store, we laugh about how much of our final cart is full of beverages. It's seriously not right.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

get you some

A new batch of funny searches that brought people to my blog:

'ikea arkansas'

'camping pee'

'throwing up at mcdonalds drive thru'

'greyhound throws up food'

'does ikea really care' (take your best guess, guy)

'drunk peeing camping'

'haven't thrown up in years'

and the winner:

'throw up work out' (I can only imagine what else came up with this search. Get it? Came up? Wow, I have too much time on my hands.)

On the life front, I know it's getting to be fall because of the arrival of:

O'Fallon's Pumpkin Ale! Yay. Go out and get some. You won't be disappointed. I am going to get another 6 pack tonight because the summer beer, Wheach, sold out really fast, and I don't want to miss out.