Archive for March, 2009

let me count the ways

March 30, 2009

Saturday. An icestorm.

Sunday. Sunshine.

Monday. Warm. Thunderstorm. Fierce thunder.

Could I love Kansas anymore right now?

Jim Seaver

After 10 years of listening, regularly, to Opera is My Hobby I had the immense honor of spending an evening with Dr. Jim Seaver and his lovely wife, Virginia. My friend Aaron made this happen. So he and his lovely wife Kendra and I spent a spectacular and surreal evening listening to opera records on old timey record machines. To hear someone’s velvety voice IN PERSON after so many years of hearing it broadcast on the airwaves. . . well, this lady gushed. And gushed. And gushed.

I have to hold tight to that evening. It beats this evening spent at the local Sears looking for slide-in gas ranges. Which they only had two of on the floor. The rest, I was assured, could be found online. All right, then. But I want to turn the knobs. Lift the grates. Is this what Internet porn is like? Gross.


a gush of images

March 23, 2009



Elegant. Complicated. Beautiful.


A little bit mysterious.


Dave! By day he builds houses. At night. Watch out! A member of two celebrated musical outfits.


Dave & Steve working hard on a Friday (even ignoring the 12-pack of Tecate I brought) to ‘button down’ the roof before the rains come.


When building a relatively small footprint (by today’s standards) think VOLUME! The same goes with hair. Fluff, fluff, fluff.

dancing sea monkeys

March 16, 2009

I have lots of new photos to share with you, but they are still on my camera and my camera is buried deep in my handbag which weighs 400 pounds. I’ll try and put them on this evening, but I do have plans to go see Andrew Bird perform at Liberty Hall. I haven’t heard much of his music, but a girlfriend of mine went and saw him at Carnegie Hall in New York. She waxed poetic about the whole evening. Even though her date was  more than slightly roly poly and more than a little bit WASP-y, she still emailed immediately to tell me that Andrew Bird would be in Lawrence and that I must get tickets. So I did. And here we are. 

Let me quickly tell you about an amazing dance performance I saw on Friday. It was staged in the open air on Friday afternoon. There were only three performers. It was an all-male team. Two were high up in the air on scaffolding. One was down on the stage. The two up top would yell down numbers to the fellow below. He would then quickly measure out a piece of wood, saw it, and then toss it, with one hand, up to one of the other dudes. They would catch the piece with one hand and toss it to the other guy. It was intricate. It was well-timed. Its soundtrack was Wilco, Neil Young, the Who, and even a little Soul Asylum. And a few bluesy bits  that made me tap my toes. And this is how my house has grown like mad little sea monkeys. From footings and forms to a house with long and high walls.

for me this day is molasses. for my house it’s trucker speed

March 6, 2009






The post below has images taken just yesterday. The images above were taken today. How is this even possible? Wasn’t there a time when I lamented day after day after day about the snail-like progress of home building? My soon-to-be neighbor took these photos this morning and emailed them to me. O, I’m so sad not to be over there today. Watching as every nail goes in. But I am very grateful for these pictures. And jealous of their amazing quality. I’ve asked my neighbor to build me an outdoor pizza oven. I hope he remembers. If not, I hope he reads this and gets out his drawing board and pencils! I promise, Scott, you will be well-fed!

the great wall of NoLaw

March 6, 2009

long wall

The Great Wall of NoLaw. 106 Feet long. Morning. March 5th, 2009

long wall, again

The Long Wall, again. Glad to see Steve there first thing in the morning.

more walls

The end of the same day. I am reassured by how hard they are working. And the craftsmanship! O, I am pleased.

bedroom view

I feel like those trees are standing up and saying, ‘hey! welcome lady!’ I also know that when I’m lying in my bed at night and they get to swaying with the wind I will probably get scared and think they look a little devilish. Or that a man in a bright yellow flight suit with goggles will be perched in their branches with a monocular wondering if my jammies are cotton and that he knows, FOR SURE, that one toenail from me will be the last component he needs to finalize his evil plan to take over the world.

doors, unicorns, make believe

March 1, 2009

Today I went over to my sister’s house to chat with my brother-in-law who is building my house. He had some crusty old doors from his grandparents’ farmhouse that he wanted to show me. They were weathered, dusty, wasp’s nest built in the panes. Perfect. I’ve already purchased two beautifully ugly doors months ago. Uniformity lacks spirit. Wrapping my brain around new construction is difficult enough. Having every second person ask me if my house is going to be ‘green’ or sustainable is boring and tedious. So, listen, I may not have solar panels, but I have some crusty doors that were somebody else’s first. They are not new. They are recylced. Reused. Loved.

two old doors

 Nina, my wee niece who is nearly 5, was wearing a tank top and shorts when I arrived there this morning. It wasn’t even 20 degrees outside. There is snow covering the ground. She had beach towels strewn about the living room floor. SHE WAS AT THE BEACH.  It was real enough that I could smell pineapples and hear the ocean. And I wouldn’t have been surprised to see a unicorn gallop by and pause for just a moment to wink at us.

A very dear and special part of my work closed down this week because of the economic crisis.  Some of my mates lost their jobs. I kept mine. There is much emotional fluttering going on in my heart, stomach, and brain. I feel small, young, and vulnerable. Make Believe seems appropriate right now. I think I will go to Hawaii this evening. Where will you go?