ocean's gift: paradox

It was late, and our words were quiet. The house slept around us, snoring noises emanating from the various rooms."It's not so much about turning thirty," I said. "I've earned this number, and I have no reason to hide from it, but…"

"The round number makes it easy and natural to take stock of your life."

I whispered agreement. Conversations like these don't often take place during the light of day; they are the omnipresent thoughts, but the last to be voiced. First in, but last out; only after the chitchat and the catching-up conversations are exhausted do the soul-searching words tumble out as the friend's hand reaches for the metaphysical doorknob of sleep.

I write this here knowing that he will see it, knowing that I'll dread the moment he comes home, wanders off to his computer, and eventually spots these words, because it'll likely happen while I'm here. None of these words will surprise him, but it's the first time I've acknowledged any of them openly.

it's never what you think

"Well, I think about friends in the back of my mind
Are they still just kids frozen in time
The mirror won't lie as the days fly by
Are they all no better off than I?"
—Sugarbomb, "What a Drag"


If I can cough, I can breathe, and if I can breathe, I'm still here. 'Here' is a relative term, though, and one whose definition will change a few times in the coming weeks. More so than I'd planned even a month ago, and more so than I've said publicly.I have a plane ticket with my name on it, a ticket that will send me away for a week for a trip that's been delayed since October for various reasons. Instead of an exciting, action-packed Vacation!™ I think I will be … escaping. Resting. I will be gone for a week, and I have zero plans for that week.

Take a picture—it lasts longer.

If you haven't seen the Library of Congress' exhibit 'The Empire That Was Russia'—The Prokudin-Gorskii Photographic Record Revealed, then you should take the time to look at it.

Before you do, though, read up on the process. A short summary: a photographer travelled around Russia in the 1910s ('nineteen-teens' if you're my grandmother), photographing everything from royalty to commoners to landscapes to architecture.The incredible thing is the medium he used—a camera with three filters, which provided him three photographic plates. One red, one green, one blue. He apparently had a stereoscope-like contraption that allowed him to project his images back together into one color photograph for others to view.

No antecedent necessary.

Tonight: absolution through quiet sadness. Tonight is one of those nights that I damn the human mind's capacity to remember, especially of things that should have been let go many years ago.

A few nights ago I had a dream about Rustina. Rustina Wear, gone these fifteen years, gone one year less than she lived—the girl who was my sister's childhood best friend. I would make expected and pithy statements about how her untimely death in a freak car accident was one that affected us deeply.

Welcome home, Amy

Welcome home, Amy, I say to myself. Look around. This is where you belong, whether or not you want to admit it.