Thursday, April 20, 2006


Shrouded for Holy Week
My friend Bobbi wanted to know why I gave things up for Lent.

"Is it a spiritual thing, or more for discipline?"

I stumbled over my answer, something about sacrifice and wanting to spend that time thinking about what choices I am making everyday.

Lent is gone now and I have a whole selection of candy around the house. I can eat it whenever I like. And I do.

Bobbi is Jewish. She celebrated Passover during the first days of Holy Week. She told me, when we were at dinner last night, that she just spent the whole week not eating bread. I realized I don't know anything about Passover. I remember the angel passing over the houses that had the blood of the lamb on the doorstep. I remember that story. But I don't know much about the holy day itself, and how Jews celebrate it.
Candles at Bromton Oratory
My in-laws are lapsed Jews. The Phillips family came from the Mendoza family, a settlement of Spanish-Portugese Jews in London. My husband and his father and brother look Jewish. But they aren't anymore.

I stopped into the Brompton Oratory in Knightsbridge last week, during Holy Week. It was Holy Thursday. That's the day that Jesus washed the feet of his followers. As it says in the mass it is "the night he was betrayed." The figures of all the saints were shrouded in purple drapes. It was afternoon. A few people, women and men, old and young, were kneeling, here and there, praying. They were alone in their thoughts, but together in their prayer. One woman was saying the rosary in front of a shrouded bulk that was Mary, hidden.

I lit a candle. I prayed too, for my family: my old family and my new one. And for my future family, that I want to have. I thought of each person, individually. And I prayed thoughts for my grandparents, who Mom tells me are always looking out for me. I wondered where they are now, now that Purgatory doesn't exist any more.

I don't think 40 days and 40 nights are enough, but I can make do with that for one small promise.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Sawin' on a Driver and playing it HOT!

Come into my world!
Someday I'll be heralded a genius. It will be that day when we all learn the truth about Phil Mickelson.

My husband wants to know why I think he is the devil. "Yeah, he's pure evil," Colin says. "Like when he ran off the course to be with his wife when she was giving birth. Eeee-viill!"

My friend Chris's response was "Maybe he reminds you of some bad person from your childhood."

Maybe. Or maybe HE IS the bad person from my childhood. Maybe he drove that ice cream truck by a little too slowly, the tinkle-tinkly music a backwards, sped-up version of Satanic text. Those orange push-up rocket sherberty things always tasted a little too much like baby aspirin if you ask me.

And the green jacket? The white-white teeth? The perfect family? The happy-go-lucky, aw-shucky-ness of his devil-may-care attitude. The devil may care... a little too much.

Yes, I don't know a thing about Phil Mickelson, except what vibe I get. It's all just a little too perfect. Too good to be true. Give me big boy John Daly anyday. Or Payne Stewart in his awful ugly clothes. Or Miguel Angel Jimenez and his puffy red ponytail.

Now those are some guys I can trust. Phil? Well, he may not have sold any certain part of his eternal-wear to a flame-dancing, pitch-fork-carrying, eternal entity, but according the song, the Devil did go down to Georgia and he was looking for a soul to steal.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Funny Bone

May wee! 
When you are hungry in Paris, what do you do???

You eat, well.

This we did, a weekend ago, in the Marais district, at "Le Coude Fou." I don't speak French, and Colin doesn't either. So I asked Babelfish what "Le Coude Fou" means. It means, according to Babelfish: The Insane Elbow.

Now Babelfish isn't perfect. For example. I just put that last paragraph into Babel fish, translated it into French, then that French back into English. Here's what I got:

"This us, one weekend ago, in the zone of Marsh, at "the Insane Elbow." I do not speak French, and Hake not either. Thus I requested from Babelfish what "wants to say the Insane Elbow". It average, according to Babelfish: The Alienated Elbow."

Dot Indian DinnerWell, that's close. I have great fun with this, with my friend, Daniela, who is German. She's goes to school in Nurenburg, and speaks perfect English, of course. But I like to surprise here with my excellent German. So I drop great things in occasionally that have been translated from Babelfish.

Come to think of it, she never replies to those emails. She must be very busy at school.

Anyway, I loved The Alienated Elbow very muchly, especially the American couple sitting under the painting (above). They were wearing the Americans-traveling-in-Europe uniform (loafers and khakis) and discussing the Moussaoui trial.

Oh, and at the table next to us: a table of Indian (dot Indian, not feather Indian) Brits, one of whom, I think, had very recently snorted cocaine. She spoke good French though.

Definitely better than Babelfish. But then, what do I know?

Friday, April 07, 2006

Where am I...

... In this city of
Brown and grey blocks
Averted eyes
Frigidaire days into weeks,
Into months; and those
Fetid greens that we
Never eat unless

... In this couple of
Vow takers, dressed up
Trussed up, on a May Day
Then left in knots
A tangled heap shipped away
Unfamiliar, unknown to other,
Dumped into the North Atlantic abyss?

... In this set of
Assembled body parts
Woman machinery, shuttered for years,
Plumbing shut off, plugged up
With the PILLs, so long;
A cycle squints to recognize the
Tick-tock-tocking time
In the unbroken English season?

...In this binding of
Books, bound themselves to
A sentence,
Like a judge waiting, to speak himself;
He's Tapping his pen,
Looking over the room,
Giving his promise, his word:
All those words.

Where am I?

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Is this a competition?

Who are all these riotous people around me?

Mother and sonI love my camera-phone. To the unsuspecting world, it LOOKS like a phone. But I can catch you! I might just try.

I love dogs. Dogs don't care if you have a harelip. They don't care if you have simple chronic halitosis (they have the complex version anyway). They don't care if you launched rotten eggs farts all through grade school.

I also like snails, but I don't know why.

I love these people. What else do you need, if you have something as close as this?

Women go inside homes and do small things everyday. The small things are so big, there is no room to name them or list them.

I like feather pillows.