Wednesday, April 28, 2010


The moment when I knew that Alea and I were going to be friends (or that he wasn't faking, or whatever) was when he called to report on a glitter sighting: "I was at Joann's. There was a lot of glitter. I thought of you."

It's a thing.

Which might be why I'm in love with this.

Or maybe just because it's awesome. Thanks to Amanda for the link. And to everyone who's already seen this on Facebook. Or Gmail. Or whatever. For your patience.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On Fun

I'm belaboring this. How can I tell? Because having fun is the opposite of sitting in your mom's living room writing about fun. And the opposite of spending all day thinking about what it means to have fun. And spending a good chunk of the evening at the mall trying to think fun. Are those pink+leopard+sequin gladiator sandals fun? Are blisters and accenting my terrible ankles also fun? Do those two things cancel each other out probably?

I, as you may know/be able to tell am not a particularly fun person. (Not asking for validation here. Thanks though. :) ) I've been coming to terms with this for the last couple of years. I'm occasionally funny, occasionally spontaneous (which is the only real way to be spontaneous, right? People who are constantly spontaneous lose something of spontaneity? Anyway), occasionally adventurous, but I'm not the girl people call up when they're looking for a good time (read that how you may).

Today I was talking with a prof about my thesis--informally, waiting for the elevator. He said: Have fun. Have fun have fun have fun. Doing my thesis and this summer and, I think I can extrapolate, just generally. And of course I got all flustered (because that's what serious people do when someone they respect tells them they should be doing something they're not, even if that something is having fun) and set my mind to it.

And then I was on campus and hit with this heavy visceral wave of boredom. I watched five people leave the library wearing khakis and pastel tops. Boring. I bought a book (The Postcolonial Reader. I wish it were more fun.) I said 0 clever things during my class (several smart things, none of them clever).

Attempts at having fun today: Graham Canyon+sugar cone (delicious, but fun?), following a toddler through Zurcher's party supply store. This, actually, was very fun. (Ball! Purple! Yellow!) Dinner with Annie and Simon was fun.

Then I bought mom sandals (Born. Strappy. I am SO boring.) And nothing flairy or fun else. And now I'm here thinking about fun. And what that means. And what it's not. What is fun? What do I think is fun?

Which ties into another thing I've been thinking about which is that my life is now. I keep thinking that at some point my life will start when, in fact, my life is now. I just contributed to NPR because my life is now, and I will probably never be fabulously wealthy. I'm pretending to try and eat right because I'm not going to wake up one day grown up and responsible and healthy. I'm trying to enjoy the things I do (rushing around Utah Valley trying to redecorate my new place) because the things I do are my life. And I'm terrible at this.

Anyway. I'm going to stop writing now because I am soo bored I can hardly keep my eyes open. And if you've stuck with my this long I applaud your endurance. (10 points if you comment with the Joe vs the Volcano quote I'm thinking of. 100,000,000 points if you can find someone to sponsor a makeover complete with steamer trunks and an exotic destination.)

Love, ke.

Dear Moms: (and other fruit snack afficionados)

Go out and buy these:

They are healthy! And delicious! And there are like 25 pieces (tiny, but delicious) per bag instead of 8--so they last forever! And they don't have gluten. And they're made with 66% fruit ingredients.

I got mine at Target. A 24-pack for $4, which I thought was a great deal.

Thanks for the heads-up Annie. :)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Dear Baby Church:

Right now your dad is picking you and your mom up from the hospital (I'm at your house keeping Scout company while she sleeps). You are a little less than a day old and we're not sure what your name is yet (this seems uncharacteristic of your parents--they are nothing if not planners--but Scout didn't have a name till she left the hospital either. So.)

This is a little bit of your story from my point of view.

Your mom told us you were on your way for Omi's birthday. This is your mom's thing (really great birthday presents) and she's great at it. We were sooo excited. Omi screamed and squealed and all of us were glowy and happy. That night when I was praying I said thanks for you particularly: I was so grateful for you and happy for your parents: we'd all been praying for you to come. Scout wanted a little sibling and your mom and dad wanted another baby and you were a long time coming. For months and months I was happy and excited everytime I thought of you and as I watched you growing.

So. About a week ago we started watching in earnest. Omi and Granpa Dave got stuck in Italy (a volcano erupted! And no flights were going through!) and since I was the only one in Provo, I started keeping my phone on vibrate and running out of Sacrament Meeting when your mom called (I sort of loved this). Omi and Dave got home finally and miraculously and we all started pestering your mom non-stop: how are you feeling? How's the baby? What did the doctor say? Thirteen times a day. She was patient with us all even though she was getting tired and uncomfortable (she's not one to lounge around: the day before you were born she was at my place moving furniture. I told her she should be careful. She said "what's going to happen? I have the baby today instead of tomorrow?" This is the kind of woman your mother is).

The week you were born was beautiful. That Sunday was sunny and warm and all of the blossoms were out. I was so glad for Spring to finally be here I could hardly stand it. Your mom went into the hospital at 4:00 and at 10:30 you were born. Your dad told me the doctor was surprised you were only 8 lbs (+13 oz) because you looked so much bigger, and he said that you were very mellow even from the beginning.

I got to come and see you this morning and all of your grandparents came: you were so fat! And so friendly! And we cooed and pinched your toes and told you you looked like your Grandpa Forsey, which is absolutely true. And your mom and dad were so proud and Scout wanted to hold you the entire time she was there (she might have gotten more presents than you did today). And some other people visited and I'm sure everyone fell in love with you on sight (site?). Ask your mom.

And so you were born.

Some things you should know:

1. Your parents are some of the best people I know. They are hard-working and thoughtful and loving. Your dad is one of the nicest men alive, and so patient and funny and soft-spoken. Your mom has an enormous heart and is always thinking of other people and she does everything she sets her mind to.
2. You are a miracle. We're, all of us (parents and cousins and aunts and uncles and granparents and friends--because your parents are loved by a lot of people), so glad to have you and so excited to get to know you.
3. You're probably going to be a fantastic athlete. No pressure, but the earlier you come to grips with this the better. :)

Anyway. You're adorable. We love you. Go team!

Love, your Auntie ke.

Friday, April 23, 2010

On food.

I am writing this right now instead of sleeping. Because I'm a genius.

But I've been thinking a lot about food lately. I've been running again. And trying to be more conscientious. And trying to lose some of the "I'M TOO BUSY TO EAT REAL THINGS!" weight. Powdered donuts. Is all I'm saying.

And a lot of food philosophies are kind of conflicting. I have a friend (hi Cherise) who's doing like 17 calories a day, but eats diet butter. I have other friends who only eat real things, but lots of cream, which is real. I have a mom who I love and respect but who did every crazy food thing ever written.

I want to get to the bottom of what I think about food. So, here goes:

What I Eat:

Rule #1. I believe in fruits and vegetables. I try to eat them for every meal. For snacks. I'd like to get as much variety as possible (not just the apple-baby carrot 1-2 punch that got me through college). I think that vegetables are free: no matter what I'm counting, I can eat as many of them as I want.

Rule #2. I believe in real food. This isn't to say I don't love me some cheetos or Sabor de Soledad chili-lime puffs (these are sold at Crest, and I don't remember what their real name is), but when I have a choice and I want to make that choice I try to choose real. I sort of thing that Cisco ruined America. But I'd rather eat butter than margarine, for instance which brings me to:

Rule #3. I believe in delicious fat. What I want is a sucker that tastes like olive oil or gum so I can just taste olive oil all the time. I love the stuff. Butter will always have a place in my heart. Really fantastic cheese, avocado, almond butter. No matter how serious I get about weight loss, I don't think I'll ever really give up delicious fat. Mmmm.

Rule #4. I believe in social eating. That is to say I try not to eat sugar or meat, but I'm going to try and be less snotty about it. Thanks to everyone who's been so obliging. (Rachel. Connie. Anne. You guys are stars.) I love to delight people with my cooking, and why would I take that from someone?

Rule #5. French women don't get fat. I'm trying to eat better, like, do the process of eating better. Slowing down. Putting my fork down. Savoring the stuff. It makes a huge difference in my attitude and consumption.

Rule #6. I believe in Diet Coke. It's so so bad for me. Maybe one day I'll give it up. But I try so hard to be good. And coke is so good.

Before writing this post it felt like there was something more profound to be gotten at. But. ke

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I'd just like to publicly acknowledge...

So you know how I've been complaining about my roommate for the last 8 months (ever since she re-rearranged all the furniture I'd enlisted Anne to help me position precisely)? Particularly since "roommate" became "roommates" when I woke up to a male voice in the next room and he never left? I have been. Complaining. So much.

I'd like to take this opportunity to eat (some of) my words. Yesterday (in the middle of a rainstorm!) I was moving (soo many books!) by myself (by myself!!) and Devon (the bonus roommate) totally jumped in to help. And not grudgingly, and not just a little, and he didn't stop once I'd packed up one carload, or once we'd delivered the books to my new place, nor once I packed up the second carload, nor when--carload 3--I reached the harried "just stuff this in a box somewhere/I'll never buy anything again" stage at 11 or so. He was a rockstar (which his hair suggested the entire time...) and absolutely saved my life.

Anyway. Draw conclusions as you will, I am done with the semester and beeeaattttt.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Do you know what I love?

Spring is here. More gorgeous by far than I ever remember. I picnicked today and walked outside and let my white oxford dry in the sun and was hit left-and-right by the smell of all sorts of blossoms. Soo beautiful.

And I whined so much. The two months between Valentine's day and tax day are hell for me: waiting, watching, whining, my hopes up and my hopes down and me furious and powerless the entire time. Then spring springs and I sit in awe. And May and June are always better and cooler and greener than I remember--spring lasts and lasts and gives way to lovely summer nights.

But for all my angst about spring coming, I love the autumn. I love that one day is warm and the next raining and then next warm again. And I was thinking about that today, about why the gradual unpredictable spring is such a more terrible transition than autumn's slow fading, and I think an answer is that I love endings of things. Spring is technically the end of winter of course, but it's a happy ending, it's an obvious beginning.

I love tragic drawn-out endings. I like kissing boys when I know I'm going to break up with them (sometimes this isn't as sinister as it seems. Sometimes it is) and the conversation you have when you trade your stuff back. I love saying goodbye to co-workers, last phone calls, last car rides, walking away knowing something's broken and it will never be the same... Everything takes on this heft of meaning when when you're doing it or saying it for the last time. Like that poem--have you heard of this?--that consists of the NY Times the morning of September 11, 2001. Even the weather (winds from the east?) seems heavy with intention.

And it's not that it's not hard. I cry and look back with regret and dwell on might-have-beens. It's just that it's the kind of hard I can handle. A friend of mine (speaking of tragic endings) used to like to poke at her bruises, she liked the feeling; I feel like this is the same sort of thing: pain I seek out, pain that's comforting...I know how neurotic this sounds/is.

And so I'll spend May napping and hiking and deliriously happy. And waiting, really, for the fall.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

On Cataclysm

I'm sort of a drama-fiend. I love scandals and secrets and shouting matches on the streets. I try to pretend that I don't, but I do. Everyone does. Drama is the coolest.

Even more than drama, I love large-scale emergencies. When swine flu was threatening pandemic (what a great word!) I would listen to the radio every day with wide eyes, waiting for the case-threshold to be met. What if it scours the world? What if it changes everything?!

On a side note, I think that this is related to my love for despots and mega-giant corporations. Hugo Chavez has his own TV station, did you know? For its anniversary he did a 24-hour Chavez-athon, to celebrate of course.

This all sounds very heartless. Is probably super heartless. But there's something really invigorating about nature taking over, reminding us that though we imagine we're in control, we are not in control at all. I like the theory that the globe is warming not because of carbon emissions, but because it's just warming. It's coming out of the ice age and it's time to warm up [NOTE: I'm not certain at all that's what's happening. I'm just saying the theory appeals to me in this clearly related way.]

This all being said, the volcano business seemed to me kind of brilliant. The earth is totally messing with humanity! Bahaha. We think we're in control and we are not! But today I found out that my mom+step-dad are stuck in Italy indefinitely and got a little sick/nervous for them. I'm glad for them it's Italy, of course, but where will they sleep? They have to get back to work. Are there ocean liners running or something?

Anyway. Pat ending about cataclysm being different when it's yours...the end.

Monday, April 12, 2010

interventionist god (kind of a poem)

I was once driving up Little Cottonwood Canyon with a friend. We were listening to Nick Cave and to this song and the drive and the night and the song and the friend saved my life:

I believe in love. And I know that you do too.

This post is about how I believe in an interventionist god. In a really actual and literal sense. I believe in a god that performs big and small and unnoticed and lifechanging miracles every day and all the time.

I'm writing because this week has been full of tiny miracles--miracles I didn't deserve, miracles I demanded, miracles I didn't know I needed, you know?

And I think too, that God knows if you believe in an interventionist god or not, and I don't know that it matters that much ultimately, it matters mostly that you act according to your experience and belief etc etc.

For me, God is there, getting into my business. Answering questions and helping me solve my problems and reminding me again and again that I know so little and am loved so much.

More, later, perhaps on learning how to forgive God and relearning how to trust him. Or maybe not. Night.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

My question is this:

Remember the first time you read Catcher in the Rye and it hit you like a ton of bricks and you cried and cried, and then later went back and found it waaaay less interesting/mind-blowing than it was when you were 16? Or when you recommended On The Road to your friend when you were backpacking in Italy in late college and she was entirely puzzled that the book was such an icon? Or trying to reread Rand while studying English (=appreciation for subtlety. =den of liberals. I devoured her books in h.s.)?

I wonder about the timeliness of books. What I'd like to do is compile a list of time-sensitive classics (not Classics, but, you know, titles with some cultural heft) with the age at which they expire. Do you what I mean? Any ideas? (Nod to the impossibility of absolutes: I know that it's different for different people, or whatever, I'm just looking for input.) (Nod to arguers: I'm sorry if you like/hate these books. I'm not really that interested in discussing their merits. These examples, of course, aren't actually referring to you but are really referring to me.)

You may now proceed. :)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Universe Told Me To

That Kerouac quote--

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars--

has been running through my head like water this last couple of months. Then, today, I was looking for this commercial (to talk about in 311)

and ran into this

and figured it was too weird a coincidence not to motivate a post.

I hate this quote is the thing. I found it (loved it!) in my high school reading of Kerouac, copied it into my composition notebook, I found a way to work it into a district meeting on the mish, might (conditional here, not evasive) have had it tattooed at one point in my life, but ultimately it's inspired more grief than anything.

I've spent years nervous about saying Commonplace Things and yawning (this is not a joke) and not living/wanting frantically enough. And so I caffeineate and eschew chitchat and rush in an out of parties never settling in one place long enough to learn anyone's name. And there's a certain rush and thrill, and I think that, when I'm on, people think that I seem interesting and that they'd like to get to know me.

But I do say commonplace things. And I yawn. And most days I'm sort of lonely and wish that my efforts to care about people were less stilted-feeling and unsettled and self-centered. And that's all ok. Normal.


Matins (pg 25)

You want to know how I spend my time?
I walk the front lawn, pretending
to be weeding. You ought to know
I'm never weeding, on my knees, pulling
clumps of clover from the flower beds: in fact
I'm looking for courage, for some evidence
my life will change, though
it takes forever, checking
each clump for the symbolic
leaf, and soon the summer is ending, already
the leaves turning, always the sick trees
going first, the dying turning
brilliant yellow, while a few dark birds perform
their curfew of music. You want to see my hands?
As empty now as at the first note.
Or was the point always
to continue without a sign?

Lousie Gluck

(You should go and buy this book--Wild Iris--and read the entire thing. It's very lovely.)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

National Poetry Month! Poetry Month!

I will not post every day, but I thought I'd start today off at least. With Dickinson, if you don't mind:

He fumbles at your Soul
As Players at the Keys -
Before they drop full Music on -
He stuns you by Degrees -

Prepares your brittle nature
For the etherial Blow
By fainter Hammers - further heard -
Then nearer - Then so - slow-

Your Breath - has time to straighten -
Your Brain- to bubble cool -
Deals One - imperial Thunderbolt -
That scalps your naked soul -

When Winds hold Forests in their Paws -
The Universe - is still -