You have your own potato. I know that.


I can’t seem to write these days, which is so frustrating, because in my head, that’s what I want to do most of all.  But when it comes down to it, I don’t have the focus, material, or whatever else I need.

Maybe because it’s been a hard year, starting with a disappointing breakup, followed by getting laid off from a job I’ve had for 14 years, followed by blah blah blah.  Getting laid off is mixed, I guess.  I’ve gotten a ticket out of a job that I couldn’t leave, but then again, there’s the bit about how women over 50 have the hardest time of anyone getting good jobs, and there’s the big mortgage, the house that’s lost half it’s phony inflated value, R. going to college, yadda yadda yadda.  Oh, but wait, I have this super-transferrable, highly in demand skill!  I almost forgot.  I know King County Code, and can say stuff like, “Per 21A.24.045D 63, you’re allowed to place the drainfield within the buffer of an aquatic area, provided you meet the criteria.  Any questions?  Why yes, I do cut my own hair!”  As my physical therapist said to me when I was explaining the code to her, "wow, when you go to a party, do people wish you would drink more?" (I have no idea why I felt compelled to explain it to her.  No, I don't.)

The potato.
And then the little stuff – a bad mammogram that was scary for a week and turned out to be nothing, but started a terrible train-wreck of a thought pattern that involved looking for a job with no hair (tip:  smile a lot) and getting health insurance with a pre-existing condition.  And R. wrecking another car (no one was hurt, phew), plus my own car hassles, and the leak in the upstairs deck that’s caused the front door to swell shut, and the woodstove that won’t open, and so on.  Oh, and this:  a potato fell out of my cupboard about a week ago, and I haven’t picked it up yet.  I know!  Every day, I see that potato and wish I would pick it up, and then I don’t.

So, I haven’t been posting because I haven’t wanted to write That Whiny Post That Makes You Tired.  You have your own problems, and for all I know, your own potato.  I'm aware of that.  But I thought that maybe if I write One Whiny Post, it will cleanse the blog palette, and I can get on with the rest of my life, because one thing I know is that when I’m in the paper bag, thinking -- sheesh, this is my life? Really, inside this paper bag? – the only way out of it is to actually write about the paper bag, and eventually, I remember that life isn’t so tiny and dark after all.  If I write about the bag for a bit, suddenly, bits of light start to come in, and after a while, the bag disappears, because I remember that amidst all of the crummy stuff, there’ve been a million large and small miracles involving how fortunate I am to have the most amazing, loveliest friends ever.  Which sounds like a cliché, something I’d feel required to say, like sacrificing a virgin to the paper bag goddess or something, but it’s completely not that at all.  I don’t want to go into it all here, because frankly, I get a little teary with the kindnesses that have come my way, but I will offer this: The other day, the instant C. got into my car, she pulled a hard-boiled egg out of her pocket and started cracking it on the windshield.  I know.  It pretty much doesn’t get better than having friends who carry the legitimate symbol of hope around in their pocket, and then, to make it less hokey, smash it on the window and eat it.

And yoga.  I have yoga, and something that I will henceforth call my own personal yoga miracle, which is that I got my favorite blanket three days in a row this week.  This is no small thing, due to my self-imposed rule that no rummaging is allowed.  With about 20 blankets, the odds are, duh, 1 in 20, but to get the blanket three days in a row is extremely unlikely -- one in a ten thousand chance of that happening.  Is that an official miracle?

But the blankets are arranged in two stacks, doubling the odds.  There’s still only one blanket, but there are twice as many desirable positions.  In fact, there are two identical blankets, but let's pretend that isn't the case, because we want to keep this simple and miraculous, don't we?  So, one blanket, two chances for it to appear in the top position makes the odds of getting it three times in a row closer to one in a thousand.  Uh oh, is that the sound of you yawning?   What if I get there sort of late, and there are only 3 blankets left?  What if other people like the same blanket, but don’t have the no rummaging rule?  I wish I didn't have to confess that I've spent several hours thinking about this, but I will.

Anyway, this is that post.  The whiny, math-laden one in which nothing happens.  Pallete cleansed.  Thanks for reading.



Comments

  1. You are more than welcome and I hope you keep poking holes in that there bag.

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    1. Thanks D! Yes, bag is disappearing...

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  2. I like the math content, and especially like the graph. I support more graphs!

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    1. Okay, good, because I'm about to have way more time to get all OCD about all manner of things. Send data!

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  3. Oh, this is not a post in which nothing happens, oh no, not nothing At All. This is a post that solidifies exactly why I like visiting you here and reading what you write - even when you think you have nothing to say - because, I may not have a potato, but I have oh so many things on my floor that I can't bear to pick up because it is just. one. more. thing. I. can't. deal. with. (ok, that was way over the top, sorry) I have a potato, with amazing sprouts that I have managed to move from my pantry to my porch, thinking, I shouldn't have wasted this potato; perhaps I can start a potato garden and grow more potatoes. Weeks ago, maybe. I'm sure you know what I mean...

    I am sorry about the breakup and the job and the mortgage on the house not worth what you paid for it. I know what fresh hell it is to try and find a job right now as a woman over 50 with very specific and not so transferable job skills. We "invested" in real estate mere months before the bubble burst and it's like a really tedious, long, bad dream that we cannot wake up from.

    I don't know much about breakups and crashed cars so far, so I'm trying to feel your pain. And I sympathize.

    I am happy about the false alarm with the mammogram. I have lived for 2 years in false alarms and call backs and extra looks and every 6 months and etc, etc, which in my family is what we call lucky, so... congrats that it was nothing. I am also over the moon that you decided to do math on the availability of your favorite blanket at yoga. We could SO be friends. You have no idea.

    AND you have a friend who cracks an egg in your car... I can't even go there, I'm so envious. So there are things that suck, but there are things I really envy you for.

    I'm hoping the right things happen for you, soon.

    Thanks for making me laugh about that potato. It is funny in a poignant, wabi-sabi way, and I just love things like that. If I lived near you, I'd come over and we'd do something amazing with that potato. Maybe plant it and hope for more baby taters.

    I'm sorry for the super long comment. Too much wine maybe.
    Thanks for posting this. It made my night.

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    1. Oh, Mel, sweetest comment ever. Thank you. Yes, we could be friends, and if you lived here, we probably would have made potato prints and then made peace flags out of the prints, and you would have photographed them in microscopic detail. Instead, I ate the potato. I know.

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  4. That's definitely a lot of stress. But your writing is more than your subject material. Besides, anyone who has lived past young adulthood has a few potatoes under his/her belt. Keep on writing if it helps you because it sure as heck is worth reading. And good luck with finding work. I believe you probably have more transferable skills than you think.

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    1. Hmm. The bit about "everyone has potatoes" wasn't supposed to sound like that. What I meant was that we can relate and be supportive. Hope that's more clear.

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    2. Oh, no no, that came out fine -- I knew what you meant. I'm not trying to be whiny here, because I know that in the grand scheme of the planet, I have it pretty damn good. At any rate, thanks for reading, and for your kind comments!

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  5. Oh crap I wish I could fix this. One of the other blogs I follow is in the same boat, and it's an uncomfortable boat. Your chartsmanship is excellent, that must count for something.

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    1. Oh, it will all be fine. I know this. But thanks for your confidence in my chartmanship! Enjoy the cactus, they are gorgeous!

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  6. How about a chart of cars, not unlike a dealers website, showing inventory. I would like to see age, color, make, model, mileage, operational status, date of lat collision, number of tickets ... etc...

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    1. You mean, my cars, or what I fondly call my fleet?

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  7. You failed to mention that the egg was laid by home-grown chickens and dyed for Easter! But I guess a good writer knows what details can be left out. I love you, man!

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  8. "Oh, and this: a potato fell out of my cupboard about a week ago, and I haven’t picked it up yet. I know! Every day, I see that potato and wish I would pick it up, and then I don’t." And just that easily, you have stitched down a bad feeling long enough for us to have a look. Well done, darlin'.

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  9. Glad you ate the potato! :-)

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