I've been feeling bad about leaving such a negative post up on the 'ol blog, especially since my malaise actually lifted a few days ago. By then, though, I'd left so many seasonal to-do's undone, that I was in quite the bind (imagine your Nesting Ground Mistress bound with ribbon, gagged with a wad of wrapping paper, pine needles scattered in her hair). But in a burst of energy fueled by Diet Pepsi (what? it was on SALE), fear, and warped determination, I have successfully caught up on everything from sending out those last few cards, to making my twice yearly pilgrimage to Pape Meat Co. to secure a prime rib roast (originally, I had wanted a crown roast of pork, but when I was in on Friday, they told me it was impossible. Then late last night, Mr. Pape himself called and triumphantly announced he would have it for me on Monday. "Oh Mr. Pape," said I. "I was in today and picked up prime rib." Ever jovial, he said, "Next time, then! Next time I promise!")
Happiness and/or approximations of happiness:
1) Tom Jones/Art of Noise cover of Prince's "Kiss." (Oh, shush now. You love it)
2) When reading collides. While reading a review of two physically gigantic books of essays/book reviews by Edmund Wilson, I discover that his essay, "The Wound and the Bow," refers to Sophocles's play about the nasty, festering wound on Philoctetes foot, and—can you believe it?—I just finished reading the play. I'm lying! I have NOT just read the play, but there is a section in Arnold Weinstein's A Scream Goes Through the House that discusses it, and I DID just read that. So, well, that counts a little.
3) The sound you heard in the move theatre during the pomegranate scene in "The Kite Runner" was my heart being ripped in two, strewn on the floor, and left for dead. Okay, this doesn't actually count as "happiness," but it does count as "being able to feel." And that's as good a definition of happiness as any other, I suppose.
4) Karito Kids for my girls! None of the nagging guilt produced by purchasing the increasingly creepy American Girls, and possibly—just possibly—some redeeming value. Now I'll just keeping my fingers crossed that 1) the dolls are not somehow laced with the date-rape drug or 2) manufactured using child labor or 3) chock full of lead. *Scream*
5) The Collected Stories by Grace Paley.
6) Old Port Lobster Shack in Redwood City. How many times must I tell you this before you go? So what if they refer to their appetizers as "shacketizers?" So what if they couldn't stop there and decided to call their shrimp cocktail a "shacktail?" Do not let these piddly details deter you.
7) Ichiban-kan for stocking stuffers!
8) Leftover beef chow fun from a deli on Clement St.
9) My brother is here at Nesting Ground (you may remember that he now resides in Madison-Freaking-Wisconsin)! He is wearing a pair of boots that are making me cross-eyed with jealousy. I'll take a picture later.