posts from the category: 'zen calm monkey'

pinstripe fedora

I went to an ice cream parlor; homemade ice cream for 50 years or something like that. Closed for a few years, it just reopened with a line all the way down the block. As I walked out a kid of about ten walked in, wearing a pinstripe fedora and carrying an Etch-a-Sketch. I think […]

Sat 20 June 2009 | link


I blinked, and eight months flowed by. I blinked, and eleven years flowed by. It took eleven years for the dates to match up, for the day my father died to be that day again. Some years I am distracted by the whirlwind that passes for April, but this year, I lived the week again. […]

Wed 22 April 2009 | link


Even though the date nearly slipped by me, for a few weeks now I’ve seen it approaching, not with a particular sadness or dread, but simply: it is coming.

Tue 15 April 2008 | link

smells like a promise

There’s talk amongst those forecaster types of isolated thunderstorms tomorrow, but I guess some leading edge is in a hurry and earlier tonight there were some reasonable breezes, and then a little light rain – the perfect amount of light rain. Not enough to make a water-level difference, not enough to close windows, not enough […]

Fri 31 August 2007 | link


An old friend died last week; a massive heart attack at age forty for absolutely no clear reason. He and his wife had just decided to uproot and float with no real agenda: Australia as a first stop, but then, who knows, beyond not returning to their longtime island home. He died while writing a […]

Tue 14 August 2007 | link

somewhere a clock is (sort of) ticking

There is a Winnie the Pooh and Tigger clock propped against the wall in the corner of my bathroom counter. It is propped at an angle, with 1 up and 7 down. It was accurate enough, if you tilted your head, but then it started losing track of time as the battery found itself unable […]

Sun 22 April 2007 | link

fall soap colors

It’s a great time of year. The ash tree outside my kitchen window went all yellow at once, giving the light filtering through the window a soft glow, and for part of the afternoon you get a bonus beam of bright orange as the sun refracts through a bottle of bright orange antibacterial soft hand […]

Thu 19 October 2006 | link

a sense of adventure

Grocery Outlet is sort of depressing if you go there just to save money (unless you stick to the same exact items you’ve have gotten somewhere else for more) but it’s kind of fun if you look at it as a treasure hunt, trying to find crazy products that didn’t quite take, foods you’ve never […]

Mon 24 July 2006 | link

in it

I’ve been doing a ton of cleanup work on my yard, getting rid of junk buildings and paint bits from painting the house last fall and a flowerbed that was really just weeds; beautification via removal. Yesterday with the help of a neighbor with a large truck I pulled down a half shack thing that’s […]

Thu 08 June 2006 | link

lingering winter

We had a run of no-jacket weather and I started working in the yard, but winter has returned; it’s snowing right now, a heavy wet snow that makes the trees into art and the misty city sky into a magic orange glow. I went quietly about my house peering out of different windows, storing up […]

Mon 13 March 2006 | link

and back again

For about the last month I’ve slept in cities such as Auckland, Palmerston North, Christchurch, Arthur’s Pass, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, and Wagga Wagga. The first time I did Wednesday, on the other side of the date line, I should have been wearing shorts. The second time, back here, I needed a coat. When I […]

Sat 17 December 2005 | link

more little good things

Recent events involving my fridge have revealed that while the gallon milk storage on the top shelf of my door sure is handy, milk stored on the bottom shelf above the crisper is just a few degrees cooler and approaches perfect as far as temperature is concerned. I love gallon door storage, but I love […]

Fri 09 September 2005 | link

ordering instructions

If you find yourself in a small country diner on the edge of a small farming town, and if you look around and nearly everyone has a lemonade on their table, and you look at the menu and see that it says: Lemonade (in season) … here’s a tip for you: order lemonade.

Tue 05 July 2005 | link

morning rain

A storm is here. I woke to soft rain that stopped while I did my morning net news rounds, but then the thunder came, far off at first and then shaking the house with a long, low rumble that promised an angry truck screaming up my street. But now the real rain is here and […]

Mon 27 June 2005 | link

what’d i say?

Boston again: There was almost always a musician down in the T, at least at the stop by my hotel (Downtown Crossing). One afternoon there was a largish older black man with an electric keyboard propped on a folding shopping cart. Next to him was a young black man with an acoustic guitar, and the […]

Wed 08 June 2005 | link

measuring victory

Q. and I hadn’t talked in a while, and a chance bit of free time when I phoned led to some good catching-up. I’d been out, six cities in two months, taking a few pictures I’m proud of (and if you know me, you know that’s rare). Back home, I mentioned after a losing season […]

Wed 08 June 2005 | link

a girl and a family

The neighbors across the street disappeared three or four days ago, with the occasional visit by a jeep or a SUV to take care of the dogs. Just now they returned, along with the jeep and the SUV and another car and lots of flowers and “it’s a girl” balloons and a tiny little bassinet […]

Sun 17 April 2005 | link


I used to think that for me to feel rich, all I needed was a four slice toaster. I got one, years ago, and it was good. Last night late, the only one awake in the house except for one irritated cat I evicted from a pile of blankets so I could put them on […]

Fri 11 February 2005 | link


My toiletries bag fell out of a bag of mine in Atlantic City, and I’m a bit irritated that the coworker who spotted it didn’t pick it up or say anything, and now it’s gone. The bag itself was a plastic bag from Target, no loss there, and most of the stuff in it costs […]

Sun 30 January 2005 | link