Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Brought to You by the Letter P

My mother recently moved from Austin (read: Big City) to the Four Corners area of New Mexico (read: Podunk). Most of my mother's family has lived in New Mexico for about 10 years, so I think this will eventually be a good thing for her (to be near more family), but right now I can tell the adjustment is taking a toll.

If I had to sum up my mother in two words, it would be Corporate Shark. All my life she's been the one running the show in big and small companies. She made crazy money and wasn't afraid to enjoy it. Now she's selling modular homes (read: Trailers) to people that generally live on the border of poverty. I'm not saying this is a bad thing (it was her choice, not a necessity), just that it's like taking a fish out of the ocean and expecting it to adapt to a cat litter box (a clean one).

What? If Darwin is right, we came out of the ocean and we're livin large in the litter, poopin up the whole planet too! Just because we had several generations to adapt and she only has several decades doesn't mean a thing. Pssshhhh.

She sounded discouraged in her recent email. Apparently selling trailers in the desert is not ALL THAT, and the slower pace of the area seems to be a concern (as I predicted). I know she'd rather be on the construction side of the real estate industry, but she tried that and found there are a lot of crooks that cut corners to make a few extra bucks. She decided she couldn't live with that, but she's been interested in construction since I was little so I had a hard time believing there's no way to fit these pieces together.

As I pondered her plight, I was reminded of the coolest thing since penguin cheeks:


My friend Amado introduced me to these homes many years ago and I've been dying to live in one ever since. Totally off the grid. Fully sustainable. CHEAP! (At least when compared to the insane real estate of the Northeastern Freezer I currently reside in.) They are so beautiful inside, and ecological, and damn, how awesome would it be to live like that?

I replied and told her she should get involved in making these the Next Big Thing. The Man with the Plan says they can be built anywhere. She would be doing something she loves in a niche that is less likely to rub her morals the wrong way, and contributing to the greater good.

Phukin A.

I went to Texas last month just before Thanksgiving. Marie (high school friend) & Scott (still has that new husband smell) sent me a plane ticket (first class - my friends ROCK) so we could go to TRF and hang out. It was an awesome weekend.

Marie is very Irish. Scott is also very Irish. Spike (as Marie affectionately refers to her first unborn child) is due on St. Patrick's Day. There's no irony in that AT ALL.

I have both Irish and Scottish blood in my woodpile. Needless to say, our normal M.O. at faire is to ride the pubs hard and put 'em up dry, but since the doctor said Spike doesn't need a head start on The Affliction of His People, this will forever be known as The Year We Were Sober at Faire. I think it was better this way. I certainly remember more of it. In high school we were party animals, but I barely drink at all now so I've become quite the lightweight. The last time I tried to keep up with Marie, well, it's a good thing Scott can stop the truck that fast. Being 18 for 20 years does not make you better at it.

While on the plane I wrote down a few random thoughts to share:

1. What do you suppose the protocol is for eating on an airplane? Do you observe the rules of polite dinner etiquette and wait for your neighbor's food to arrive before chowing down or is your seat your own little world so you should dig in before it gets cold? Does it make a difference if you're in coach or first class? I guess actually it would since first class is the only place you get fed on a plane these days.

2. Sneezing is kind of gross but we can't help doing it in front of others, so isn't it nice that someone usually blesses you each time anyway? And of course the power of suggestion just caused me to sneeze. Ew. At least I'm in the window seat and not stuck in the middle of two people with no proper way to turn.

3. They served ice cream as dessert and all I could think of was J's paradoxical love of ice cream and fear of any smell in the cabin being blamed on him. I passed on the ice cream.

The clock on the nightstand is glaring at me in disapproval, and the sheets are promising sweet dreams if I hurry up and snuggle in.

The stars have been especially sparkly the last few nights too. Good night stars. Thank you for looking in on me.