The Keurig. Eleanor & Park. Say Yes to the Dress on Netflix Instant. Bean Boots. Madame Clairvoyant. One delicious suntan. Flight Behavior. That rumor about the Joe Jonas sex tape. A top-secret project, or three. My Mad Fat Diary. A very, very limited amount of DIY. Mumford & Sons. Super-dark Ann Taylor modern skinny jeans. My friend Lisa. Holding hands. Baby spinach and almonds. Songza. Trader Joe’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups. Three identical Gap cardigans. Grad school. A satisfying ache. Dinner with Sierra and my sister at the Meatball Shop. The USPS. Ginger molasses cookies from Flour. Fort Lauderdale and Cleveland and Portsmouth, New Hampshire. George Strait (no, really) and the Zac Brown Band. The Fourteenery. You.
(It’s a new week and the world is full of good things. Come tell me yours.)
In January Tom broke his elbow and needed surgery so we spent the first three months of 2013 getting to the end of television, holed up on the couch in the new apartment watching every remotely arty drama we could get in our eyeballs and a lot of other crap besides. I made a lot of pesto. We ate a lot of soup. Mad Men finally grew on me but I only liked the parts of Dexter with the creepy incest, which is typical; Homeland was kind of annoying and Shameless continues to be my very fave. A mid-February weekend in Florida notwithstanding, my skin has the color and mostly the feel of loose-leaf paper. I open the windows even when it’s freezing, just to feel the air.
Three supposedly fun activities I find hugely boring and/or stressful:
Two words I never, ever spell correctly on the first go:
One thing I would like to say to a person who is not you:
well HERE are some things i am liking this summer:
mushroom and ricotta pizza from otto’s. nine hundred page books about prostitutes. castle island. those weird/charming breakdowns in the middle of sugarland songs. white sheets. giving in. one-piece elizabeth taylor bathing suits. cherry tomatoes. the water pressure in my parents’ house. anticipation. ice cream sandwiches from the hub. longform.org. sue miller. jesse pinkman. joe biden. looking at people’s pictures on facebook and saying, “ugh, get away from me,” in a disgusted tone. egg and cheese with ham on an english muffin. the third season of grey’s anatomy. neon purple sneakers. throwing stuff away. task lighting. the new maroon 5 cd. lake houses. wes anderson, sort of. thunderstorms. adventures. playing outside.
(tell me what you like this summer)
It seems I am crashing into things left and right lately. I have the bruises on my body to prove it.
Here, have a weird, spooky song.
The Residence Inn in Roanoke, Virginia is, improbably, a palace of epic Southern proportions. “This is my favorite hotel,” I keep declaring, looking around at our giant suite, the fireplace and full kitchen and a pool where we drink cocktails made from the sweet tea vodka Megan is moving to her new house, along with the rest of her earthly posessions. “This is the best hotel of my entire life.”
Meg laughs at me as she checks us in, Lisa’s sunglasses perched on top of her head and our bags spread out all over the tiled lobby. “Please tell me that’s not true,” she says.
Which, okay, it’s not. It is a nice hotel, though. And nice hotels are important when you’re two nights into a road trip from Boston to Fort Smith, Arkansas with two of your book club bests and armed with only a bathing suit, a cooler full of hummus and Vitamin Water, and 600 channels of satellite radio. Small things starts to matter. When we pull out on Thursday morning it’s a hundred degrees at nine in the morning, and I glance wistfully over my shoulder at the complimentary breakfast we’re leaving behind.
Luckily, there are a carload of adventures to be had on the other side of the Mason-Dixon: we spend Friday night at the Grand Ole Opry and a steamy afternoon touring Graceland, stopping often for bathroom breaks and Sonic limeade. Every single bar we go into has a band. In Nashville Lisa saves my life with a band-aid magically procured from the depths of her purse while we wait in line for some ill-advised late night Frito pie: “And macaroni and cheese!” she instructs cheerfully, heading back to the table to wait for me; completely unprovoked, a kid in front of us in line tells us it’s his twenty-first birthday, and that his friends are making him go to Hooters even though he doesn’t want to. “And a goo-goo cluster.”
In Arkansas we hit the strangest traffic jam I’ve ever encountered in my years on this planet, an hour-long standstill that seems to portend zombies or nuclear apocalypse, flat endless green on either side of the highway; eventually we pull off and take a back road, farmland and abandoned general stores, the sun settling a little bit lower in the sky. I toss my phone into my purse, lean my head against the window. We have miles and miles to go.