A Vent

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I hesitate to write this, at the risk of seeming all over the place. But that’s what I am. Aren’t we all? We have the perfect coffee in the morning. Sitting for maybe just one minute (but it is so precious and so delicious) in the cool early autumn sun. I sit on top of my picnic table (who needs benches?) -still in the shade when it’s coffee time. I need to drink it quickly now before it cools. The air has a chill to it, but isn’t crisp. The leaves are all still green. Some are yellow but that’s only because it didn’t rain significantly or continuously for the second half of summer. My eyes are tired in the morning and the weeds blur in with the flowers. Maybe it’s the low light that tricks me. We enjoy our coffee and the day is off to a good start. But then we get grumpy because the tractor needs oil or there are too many tweets (yes, tweets. I reread this and thought I meant weeds, but no. Tweets.) that need responding, or somebody sent you an email asking for one million soap favors by tomorrow (I don’t work like that). Life is good. But sometimes we get grumpy. (We=me).

I’m typing this sitting in bed. Drinking a glass of wine. It seems so self-indulgent. It is self-indulgent. But sometimes self-indulgence is important. I ate only beans for lunch and dinner so I’m making it up to myself.

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I hear the rumble of what turns out to be a plastic children’s wagon being pulled by a father. I can see him out my window as he walks by. He’s staring up at the missing fascia board on the front porch roof that Eric and I optimistically started removing sometime before. Sometime before the blur of spring or summer. We did it with such enthusiasm and intensity and motivation. And we haven’t touched it since. And this is part of the problem. But I suppose it’s only a problem because I make it out to be.

I do a lot of things. Some of them fit together neatly like matching puzzle pieces. Farming and herb collecting. Seed saving. Soap making. They make up the side of a puzzle. Matching pieces in a straight line. Then there’s music. The home construction and renovation. Random pieces whose matching parts you haven’t found yet. You estimate where they might go and you put them there. They wait like islands for their partners. Sometimes they wait forever (I was never one for puzzles).

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The phone is ringing and I think it’s Eric. But I look at the clock and think to myself, either his meeting went very quickly, or this isn’t Eric at all. I answer the phone and all I hear is the dreaded delay. I know it’s going to be a survey. I love surveys! I’m serious. I really do. But the problem with surveys is as soon as you answer one survey the survey people give your phone number to every single telephone survey on the planet. And then taking surveys is your full-time job. I hear the delay and it pains me, but I hang up. Earlier today a woman called conducting a survey and I couldn’t bring myself to hang up. When she asked if I was 18 I thought about lying to her. But I couldn’t lie to this poor woman. Instead I told her the truth. “I don’t have time for this survey right now.” And then I waited. I waited for her to try to convince me to take the survey. But she didn’t convince me. She said okay, and she hung up the phone.

I used to take all the surveys. I once was lied to by someone from a political party when they asked me if I would be voting for so-and-so, and I said ‘no, I would be voting for the person running in the opposite party’ and they told me I was misinformed. That the person they were calling for was actually in this very party I was talking about. I reported it to the Attorney General. I must have had so much free time. Now I hang up on survey takers so I can get back to my important work of sitting in bed and drinking wine and writing rambling blogs about how frazzled I feel and how I know the neighbors are judging me.

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The other night Eric and I were in the kitchen trying to write a set list for our release show this weekend. We were talking logistics, debating the merits of playing certain songs over others. We frequently have intense discussions about music. It can get heated. And it’s great because we’re life partners and business partners and music partners and so we can hash stuff out and then still love one another in the end and sleep in the same bed: because it’s mostly compartmentalized, except for the stuff that’s beneficial not to compartmentalize. We weren’t disagreeing about anything, we were just feeling strongly about things. I said something to him, my back facing the back door. I said something with a curse word in it and I said it loud. For emphasis. All of a sudden Eric looked behind me “Hi Mr. and Mrs. Smith!” He shouted loudly, as though it could cover up the bomb I just dropped. Our 70-something year old neighbors were at the screen door. I leapt out of my seat, speaking as loudly and as effusively as Eric. They were holding a bowl of raspberries they had brought over for us. Mr. Smith asked if I had something he could transfer the berries in to. He only gave us half. I was docked half a bowl of berries for swearing.

We’re not perfect. Did I mention I’m sitting in bed drinking wine by myself and I ate only beans for lunch and dinner? Thanks for letting me vent it out. I feel better already.

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