Monday, December 16, 2013

Searching for Ugly

I was pretty sure this was the place.

Had it been dark out, I could have easily missed it.
Behind the coffee shop, and around the corner from the tattoo studio, 
   it was small, and (yet) indiscreet.  

I pulled into the alley, between the short row of red, brick buildings,    
   and parked the car. 

And, I am not sure if it was the way 
   that I was dressed, 
or the desperate and determined look in my eyes, 

                                 BUT . . . 

when he appeared from the back room, 
   he seemed to know exactly what I had come for.  

He showed me his stash. 

   "This is IT?" I asked.

   "Everybody wants some," he replied, shrugging his shoulders.  

I stood back, assessing the size, shape, and quality of his goods.

   "Do you have anything . . . uglier?" I asked.

   "The ugliest are the first to go," he said.  
   "We should be getting some uglier ones in next week."

   "Okay," I said.  "I'll come back then."  

With a nod, and half a smile, he returned to the back room.

And, as I exited through the front door, 
   the sign dangled to and fro.


Monday, December 9, 2013

The Quitter's Studio

As we were driving past the line of brightly lit storefronts,
   my oldest son blurted something out from the back seat.

     "QUITTERS studio???"

I turned my head in the direction where he was looking, and could not help but laugh.   

     "QUILTERS studio," I corrected.  

It did not compute.

     "O-kay, sooooooo, what's a QUILTERS Studio???"

But, he had already lost me.
I was much too distracted
   imagining what a "QUITTERS" studio would look like -
a guilt free zone filled with unfinished projects.   

A portrait painting with barely a face,
   a knitted sweater with no arms,
a wooden chair with not enough legs.
a metal clock with no hands . . .

Island of Misfit Projects.       

A speckled wall that still needs painting.
   piles of papers that still need filing,
kitchen chairs that need tightening,
a broken bookshelf that needs repairing . . .

Suddenly, I realized, my dream had crossed over to reality.


And, then, a brilliant thought came over me.  

I could start charging money every time someone enters my home.      

"Welcome to my home!"  I would say.
"Please enjoy and appreciate my unfinished projects.
   And, don't forget to enjoy the unfinished cookies and coffee, as well."  

Technically, though, "unfinished" is not the same as "quitting".

I do intend to finish those projects . . . some day.

Maybe after Christmas.

   "Mom!" my thoughts were interrupted.  "What's a QUILTERS studio?"

   "A place where people go to buy materials and get ideas for making quilts," I responded.

   "What KIND of quilts?" he asked.

   "You know, like, blankets, comforters, bedspreads . . . hand stitched and embroidered.  There are people who do that," I responded.

With a look on his face, as if I had just given him the most bizarre piece of information, and it was his job to solve this "problem", he said,

   "Can't they just buy one at Bed, Bath & Beyond???" 

Monday, December 2, 2013

You Can Pick A Turkey (but you can't pick your relatives)

 It was late afternoon . . . 

The sun – just barely peeking through,
   casting a warm glow across the linen dressed table.  
Perfectly choreographed fine china. 
Candlelight - flickering, flirting;
   dancing alongside the portly glasses, adorned in red.  
Turkey - carved, and presented, beautifully, on a platter. 
Anticipation of a tasty, mouthwatering meal.    
And, as they all gathered ‘round, cousin Bob spoke 
     (a question, in the form of a statement, and very profound) :


And, so began the dinner table conversation . . .

     “HE has a butt chin.”

     “SHE has a butt chin.”

     “YOU have a butt chin.”

     “I DO???”   

     “What IS a BUTT chin?”


Suddenly, Grandma Rose,
     who is sometimes there (sometimes, not) chimed in:

     “With a chin like that, I’ll bet your mom had a hard time
                                                     figuring out which end to diaper.” 

                 STUNNED SILENCE.


Then, cousin Bob spoke up, again.

   “Who can touch their tongue to the tip of their nose?”

And, the dinner conversation continued . . .