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The Malheur Butte. Malheur County, Oregon

Now for something cheerful.

I was going through my collected bits and pieces of writerly writings. And found this sort of journal I’d kept for a hundred days, more or less. Finding good things and writing them down, or some such New Age-ish clap-a-trap. Now, I’ll not include every last one. Because most of them make sense only to me and name names. I’d not wish to be sued or have someone write a nasty Facebook post passively-aggressively directed toward my general direction. That is, if anyone even bothered to read this here post. Who gets a full bald mention. Which might upset them and cause them to go for lawyers.

Oh, that title? I am trying out a theory of mine. We’ll see how it goes.

But. I will share some of the more funny or poignant ones. I’ll include the day number. And the start date…

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On the highway going up toward the Owyhee Reservoir. 

from 100 Days of the Things I Love:

1– The delight of Molly, the Chocolate Lab, when she sees me in the morning. How her little body wiggles all over, how her face lights up. Coffee on a snowy morning. How the blackbirds scold me and never forget I am enemy number one. My grandmother Jarrett’s hands, how powerful they were, how they could make anything from pies to fried chicken, how elegant they were. The smell of a freshly cut mint field. [ June 17, 2014 ]

2. Rain on the roof, that sound, that sound. That smell of rain, a rarity in the bone dry West. The color pink, that delicate blend of white and red, the pastel of it smeared on blossoms. Limes, that cool taste of citrus and dreams. My family remembering it’s my birthday. My brother remembering how Grandpa Wuehler used to say you, too, you too after one wished him a happy birthday [ Feb 2nd, same day as the groundhog holiday ]

3. Sunny mornings in early summer, before it turns so ungodly hot and dry. Looking through old pictures. My mother making bread and slapping me across the face with the raw bread dough. [ A fun smoosh of yeasty dough in the kisser ] Making ornaments out of homemade play dough to hang on the fake tree. Painting them, watching my mother paint hers.

4. Alone time, where I can talk to myself. Digging for worms and finding them. Thunderstorms, the big loud rough noisy ones. The taste of mint. Oreo cookies that have peanut butter centers. Yanking those long hairs from under my chin.

5. That one Christmas Eve when it snowed so heavily. I was eight or nine and at grandmother’s house with all the relatives about. We played outside, we kids. And it was magic. Toasted cheese sandwiches and tomato soup at my grandparent’s house in Fruitland, Idaho– Velveeta and Campbell’s, of course. Rummaging through my grandmother’s, both of them, jewelry boxes, all the sparkly costume jewelry.

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6. Finding eggs in a bird’s nest. Robin eggs, that brilliant turquoise-lime combination of hue. Hunting for peach-colored Fire King dishes and finding them. Antique stores full of dusty, long-ago treasures. Swimming in the ocean for the first time, that big salty joyous reunion of my soul meeting something bigger and stronger than me.

7. Reading a favorite book again. Walking in snowfall at night, the crunch, the icy air, the quiet. Watching tadpoles. The smell of warm vanilla.

8. The sound of a sprinkler. Burning weeds or burning anything at all, really. A big wide blue blue lake with no one but me to see it. Movie theatre popcorn smell. Pretty coffee cups.

9. Springtime’s new grass, that fresh delicate green. Miracle on 34th Street- the original, finding it for 65 cents at the thrift store. Getting to watch Captain Blood all the way through the other night. Sleeping through the night without waking. Getting hired.

11. Miss MacGregor, for calling me up to her desk to tell me I was a good writer. Driving along the Extraterrestrial Highway in Nevada, that weird, very solitary landscape, the two Ferraris that rushed past my not-powerful little Chevy pickup, the free-range cattle roaming back and forth over the road. Reading the Blue Castle again, for the hundredth time, Valancy’s journey so somehow perfect and fresh each time.

12. Playing cards with my grandmother Jarrett. Playing marbles with her, too. ROX– my grandmother’s way of telling Curly, her Chihuahua, no. How Curly would just cringe and wither. A hawk circling lazily above a just cut hay field, hunting. Magpies suddenly hushing if you get too near, watching you, assessing you. Bottle feeding a kitten the dog brought in from somewhere.

16. Tacos, with cucumbers, sour cream, cheese, ah. Smell of pines when up in the mountains. Camp Perkins and the campfire times. Baby birds and their giant mouths. Bumblebees and my mother stroking their back, they would get so mad! Coffee drunk from a lovely cup, a special cup. Raspberries eaten right out of the container or off the bush.

17. Musicals. The smell of fireworks. Air conditioning.

18. Ice cream on a hot day. Hot chocolate on a cold day. My mother’s pies. My mother making pickles, the lovely jars and the sprigs of dill, the mysterious spices. The smell of newly cut grass. The rounded tubby belly of a just fed very young orphaned kitten. Discovering a snake under a board or piece of metal sheeting. Hearing a beloved song on the radio while driving. Best of Intentions/Travis Tritt

19. Frogs chirping in the spring. The yard toad. Inventing entire lives in my head. Knowing there were once mammoths in the world. Rum and Coke.

20. A secret little brown stream. Wildflowers that cover an entire hillside. Cactus blooms in spring. Raspberry truffles. Hazelnut anything. Bright colors. Scratching a pig until it collapses with a satisfied groan, eyes blissfully closed.

21. Having money in my pocket. A job. When I was young enough to believe life would be good…am going to stop here as I am full of rage and anger and hate.

22. A full moon on a clear night. A misty rainy day in Eugene when I didn’t have to go anywhere. Petting a small manta ray at the Long Beach aquarium. Seeing the clay warriors at Xian, even though I was in utter pain from my arthritis and a total bitch to one and all [ sorry sorry sorry :{ ] My earring collection.

23. My elf costume my mother made that I wore for years. Trick or treating in Patterson, Washington. Carving pumpkins. [[Omitted part of this one…]]

24. The giant river clam my mom put in our aquarium in Washington State. How it glided around on its foot. Swimming in the Columbia with all the neighbor kids, that first cold shock of the river water, the unholy thrill of some stray fish sliding across your leg at times. Dreaming of road trips, lately, with my mother. Eating at the North Hollywood Diner– their tuna melt. Going into the second hand stores in North Hollywood, ah.

26. Discovering things in a long-stored box. The blues of the ocean on a calm day. A cup of coffee enjoyed with an old friend.

28. New pretty clothes that fit. Sitting outside a coffee shop and people watching in Vilnius, listening to a street performer play the accordion. My grandmother telling the story of ‘ so proud when poppa showed ours ‘– about a group of drunk relatives and neighbor men trying to pee across a ditch. Flying into Seattle after a year in China, was in tears and so happy just to be home.

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Shenyang, China. View from an apartment.

29. Finding the Chili Bangkok, the big mural of Buddha on the wall. My weird friendship with D. T. Ice water. Black cherry Kool-Aid on a hot day. Picking up shells on the Florida beaches with Bonnie.

30. Hearing the moan of coyotes at night. A deer in a field. Pink stretchy gloves. Decorating for Halloween. Yankee Candle store in Boise– sniffing all the scents. My small collection of stuffed bunnies.

31. That first time I read Anne of Green Gables. Can’t think of anything today. It’s smoky and drab out, my country is turning into the unkindest shithole ever…and there doesn’t seem to be enough motivation in the world to get me to look for a job.

I think I’ll end there…and do a part two and a part three later on. Some little revealing glimpses. Be fucking brave. Right?

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Halloween in Shenyang, China. Getting ready for the, yes, pub crawl. 


2 thoughts on “30 FLAVORS OF CHEERFUL PORN

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