<Slurring> “I know zhu believe that. We TALKED about thish BEFORE!” I waited, lined up in the pub. No servers here, you want something, you order it at the counter—food, drink, merch. Or maybe at the bar, if you’re lucky enough to get a seat at the bar. Five, six people away from the register. … Continue reading Poke at the Hive
I’m sensitive. No, really, I am. I’m a grown man scared of ghosts. Eli’s horror movie phase only lasted about a year. As a young teenager, he blew through an extensive list of well-known titles. The Exorcist, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Shining, et al. Trying to participate, I suggested we watch the 1982 film … Continue reading Ghost Story
Eli left for work at seven yesterday and didn’t return until six-thirty last night. Sophie came home from a weekend away yesterday, popped out of bed this morning, her birthday, and drove off to educate a gaggle of kids in animal science. Susan, excused from attending work in-person, trades off remote work and managing our … Continue reading Goldbricking
My hips ached. I couldn’t sleep. At three o’clock, it occurred to me to take some ibuprofen. That helped, but way too late, I was up. I took my Covid test at five. The extra line, the positive line, showed up in ninety seconds. I spent the next fourteen minutes Googling whether it might disappear. … Continue reading Isolation or Vacation?
The guy pulling the strings over at the Other Stuff isn’t doing his job. Generally, I resent bloggers making excuses for their absences. They all start with “Sorry I haven’t posted in so long…” and end with “I’m back, and I promise to do better.” Hollow promises. These self-chastising posts always represent a predictable step … Continue reading Katherine Dunn gives me a poke
My coworker Bob called them chapter breaks—those steps in our fitness level that we periodically tumble down, never to return. I noticed this first in my thirties. I lined up a string of successes, personal records in a couple of races—a 10K and a ten-mile—a respectable marathon time, twenty-third overall in a thirty-three-story stair climb … Continue reading Decline
♫ My sister got lucky, married a yuppie, took him for all he was worth... ♫ --Lyrics from “Yer So Bad” by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne “This is suburban music, right Jeff?” Maria, denigrating my friends from Virginia. We stood immersed in a din of drinkers shouting over, or singing along with the album … Continue reading Ode to Suburbia
. My dad called me. “Jeff, do you know Allie Winston?” “No, I don’t think I know that name.” “Well, boy, he sure knows you!” Since my stepmother died, my father has been trying to find ways to fill his days. Initially, he immersed himself in the arduous task of wrapping up her affairs—selling her … Continue reading Jeffrey, Eat your Beans!
Two-thirty in the morning, awake, paralyzed with pain. I turned on the TV for distraction. Counting the minutes until my next morphine dose. This went badly. Me: Hey it’s been four hours since my last dose, can I have my morphine now? Nurse: I already gave you your morphine. You need to wait four more … Continue reading The Big Trees
Pattern in sand left by thirty to forty mile per hour winds -- Jeff, are you OK driving? Is the drop-off too steep? -- Dad, you’re really off balance, are you good? -- Jeff, did you eat enough for this hike? -- Dad, are you still feeling dizzy? -- Jeff, be careful, don’t touch that … Continue reading Fragility
Monday: Most of us encounter these days. “It’s just part of traveling.” “Yeah, the sucky part.” Early in our relationship, the universe stranded Susan and me in Minneapolis. Thunderstorms rocked the eastern half of the U.S. “We’ll put you up in the Holiday Inn and book you on the next flight to Albuquerque.” After morning … Continue reading Killing time at OAK
C.J. poked me today. Mr Cann, just checking in to see if you’re fine? Feel I’m going to worry that something random and terrible has happened any time there isn’t a blog post often enough! No kidding. She’s not the only one. Last Wednesday, I went to a spin class at the Y. As I … Continue reading Traumatized?
Alpha-Gal? No, it’s not a superhero from the 1960s. Not the PTA president at your kid’s elementary school. Not the captain of a cheerleading squad. Alpha-gal is an abbreviation, the familiar name of Alpha-galactosidase, an enzyme prevalent in red meat, and useful for breaking down oligosaccharides into monosaccharides in our digestive system. Beans, I’m talking … Continue reading Alpha-Gal Syndrome or something like it
I drove into one of those industrial parks that sit out beyond the suburbs. Buildings lined the street in various stages of construction, off-white concrete, nondescript. Gravel parking lots surrounded by ten-inch-high curbs still awaited macadam and white lines. Yellow construction vehicles, all types—backhoes, dump trucks, bull dozers, steam rollers—scattered throughout the complex. Wide, desolate … Continue reading Admitted
Congrats! The Other Stuff is getting noticed. herekittykitty and 3,898 others have started receiving updates. Yay, a new follower. A parade of names, thousands of them. Are any of them real? They arrive, a steady drip, three, four, seven a day. Names lacking an account, just a string of letters—sometimes numbers—linked to nothing, maybe there's … Continue reading A Parade of Names
Trump 2020 – No More Bullshit. I saw that popular right-wing sign all over my county during the Black Lives Matter protests after George Floyd’s murder. What bullshit was that? You know, that people of color demanded not to be killed by police when confronted over minor infractions. I can’t think of a better phrase … Continue reading No More Bullshit
Dammit. I can’t find that post. I searched the blog for flea market, junk and vendor. No luck. No patience either. I want to write, not browse someone else’s blog looking for a post I might never find. I read it during my transition phase, shortly after I attended the West Virginia writer’s workshop. I … Continue reading Junk Shops
Each year, I link a blog post on Facebook and call Tourette Syndrome Awareness month a success. In my mind, I check it off the list. I spread some awareness, time for a break—a 364-day break, well earned, I need the rest. Last year I linked my thoughts on the book Motherless Brooklyn, Jonathan Lethem’s … Continue reading Aware
Sometimes I think of my phone as my best friend. Five years ago, I wrote an essay called Time Travel. I dismissed our current technological acuity as lightweight, more focused on entertaining ourselves with our cell phones than fixing the actual problems that plague society. Mostly, I focused on the severe diseases left unsolved from … Continue reading Twenty Year Old Me from 1983
Something's going on, and I'll probably never get it… --- Song lyric from She’s Crafty by the Beastie Boys I amaze myself at how incompetent I can be. If someone asked me what traits I hoped I instilled in my kids, my list would be 1) Politeness, 2) Empathy, and 3) Competence. That’s the order … Continue reading Phone Call from the Future