Just enough

You wouldn't think you could turn to New Era for an example of a beautiful poem. Or maybe I wouldn't. But at any rate, below was a contest winner back in 1991. It feels right and true to me, in addition to also being simply lovely. Kudos, Mary Lynn Bahr, kudos.

The Comforter

They say the fire falls swiftly,
Breaking adamant hearts, neatly
Dividing joints and marrow
For sterile reassembly.
Pure, molten personality
Will cool into new symmetry
As crimson years bleach into snow
And melt out of memory.

I kneel and cringe, expecting
Ecstasy and quickening,
Ambush by wrestling angels,
Annunciation that compels
Belief. Tonight only snow
Falls, half an inch, just enough.

Pancakes with syrup traps

I could never really believe The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It wasn't the presence of fauns or the magical furniture that transported kids to a world where it was always winter but never Christmas. It wasn't even the talking Lion and the silly story of him dying and coming back to life (as if anybody could believe something like that). But, I was willing to accept those things. Suspend my disbelief and all that. What I could not look past was the Turkish delight.

Edmund sells the entire world out for the treat. However, in real life, Turkish delight resembles nothing as much as it does squishy, solidified perfume. Nobody (and I mean nobody, even British children on wartime rations) would do what he did if Turkish delight were on offer. Other sweets, sure. But waffles? I would sell my own foot for waffles. Seriously. I love them. That's what the White Queen should have lured him with.

Which is what this story is leading up to. My mother the other day threatened that we should change our Christmas breakfast tradition. "Have something new this year," she suggested. See, from well before when I was born, my family has had what we call strata every year on Christmas morning. It's a breakfast casserole with eggs, cheese, bread and cream of mushroom soup. So many happy memories are tied up in strata: being too distracted by presents that I had just opened to eat any of it, learning that mushrooms are not gross, having everybody around on Christmas morning, all eating the same thing year after year . So, even if I were not the most change-adverse person I know, I'd be appalled that this tradition is under attack. This, people, is the true war on Christmas.

However, my mother followed my whinging question, "what do you mean 'something new'?" with the phrase, "maybe waffles." Oh my goodness. My culinary weakness. My achilles intestine, if you will. The suggestion, though probably false and most certainly not likely to happen, created a real inner crisis for me. Is it better to keep with traditions of tasty food or buck them for the holy grail of breakfast breads? I'm sure the contortions of my soul were evident on my face. Which is why my protesting, "Naw, I think we should stick with strata" probably didn't sound too convincing.

So, family, if you come over on Christmas morning and find that waffles are on the menu, I'm sorry. My hand was forced. The flesh is weak. I was tempted beyond that which I was able to bear. And, if you're too upset to eat yours, I'm sure I can find them a happy home.

Squirt me twice, shame on me.

After my very cheap, but nice and shiny water bottle from Walmart broke on the second week of my using it, I decided to upgrade a smidge. I shouldn't have been too shocked that three dollars does not ensure that your water bottle straw will actually be functional. But I was. I hate it when I turn out to be cheap rather than thrifty.

However, I was delighted when I found this guy at Target for under ten bucks (paying more than ten dollars for shaped plastic designed to hold water strikes me as borderline insane). He's so pretty. It's like drinking from a giant sapphire! He's not quite as big as I would have liked, but he still gets the job mostly done. And, considering the fact that I am never more than probably 100 yards from a drinking fountain, I will probably survive with his low capacity. Though I did have a moment of panic during the BlizZion panic about being stranded in my car all night by the side of the road with only this scant bottle to ensure I staved off dehydration. [Yeah, I know there would have been ample snow around me and that snow is somehow water and probably potable AND that dying of dehydration over the course of one night is unlikely, but still!]

So, I'm pleased with him for the most part. Except. Three times now I've flipped the little nozzle to take and drink and water has come gushing forth from the straw. Not a little water, a LOT. All three times, I've been sitting down, holding the bottle over my lap. Which means, it's looked like I was a candidate for the medicine whose suggest that your over-active bladder is getting in the way of your pursuits like attending live baseball.* Which you know, you can't really say, "my water bottle just exploded all over me!!!!" when someone looks at you askance and then notices that the very water bottle is still in your hand, decidedly un-exploded.

I'm sure somebody sciencey could explain how these times were always after the bottle had been sitting for a while during extreme temperature changes (like overnight in my car). And that water somehow gets sucked up the straw by "physics", that darkest of the dark arts. And somebody more rational would learn, after the first time, that you should always unscrew the when first using the bottle for the day. But me? I'll stick with this: a blogpost where I complain about a problem and/or laugh at myself for how astounding dumb I can be sometimes. I mean, who can't work a water bottle, for heaven's sake?

*Herpes medication=kayaking; bladder issues medication=watching baseball. What does that mean?