Friday, October 30, 2009

Comments, Questions, Concerns

I have a few questions that I would like answered.

1. Why is it sure to rain when I wear my leather jacket?

2. Why do I always get sick within hours after getting a vaccine?

3. Why does the Weather Station predict rain when I planned my day around hiking outside?

4. Why does Telly walk the other way when I say come?

5. If I leave a bowl of candy on the front porch with a sign that says take one or two, will children take the entire bowl?

6. Why does the dog *try* to get on the bed when I don't want him to, but refuse to stay on the bed when I want him there?

If you have answers to these highly pressing questions, please let me know. You can find me in bed, wrapped up in a bathrobe and blankets, trying to convince the dog that he wants to lay next to me and keep me warm.

It was a really hard week at work. Whoever you are, where ever you are reading this from, do the children in your state a favor and go volunteer for a CASA program (this is not who I work for, but it's a nationwide group). If you decide to do this, tell me. It'll make me feel better.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

God, Garth Brooks, And Front Row Tickets

What? You say. Grace, you are off on a tangent again. You crazy. While that is demonstrably true, these things are all related in my tired brain. (I got the idea--or rather, remembered this little event in my life--here)

I must have been in about seventh grade, and I loved Garth Brooks. Okay, I still do. I own all the CD's, and I can sing along to all of them. He came to Buffalo, and apparently, he always buys out the front row tickets, and then has members of his band walk around the concert hall beforehand and hand out the tickets to unsuspecting people (I suspect the formula for this is young, pretty, and likely to sing along). My sister got us tickets (mind you, this is a seventh grader and her sister who is seventeen years older) and we were desperately hoping this would happen to us.

I think I prayed my eyeballs out that night. I mentally begged, pleaded, prayed, made deals, promised, and finally fell asleep on the end of an Our Father.

The next night, my sister and I were roaming the arena halls, and lo and behold, a man walks up to us and starts chatting my sister up. And then he says, "I'm Jimmy from the band. Want front row tickets?"

Do I want front tickets? Why, yes, sir I do!

That was the best concert ever. I have Garth Brook's guitar pick and great memories of standing with my elbow on stage, singing "Two Pina Coladas" along with my sister. Amusingly, Garth Brooks has a song about unanswered prayers. Whenever I hear that song, I smile and think about my answer.

I prayed my little heart out that night saying thank you for The. Best. Night. Ever. Now, I look at that night and thank God for giving me such a wonderful memory with my sister.

And, of course, a Garth Brooks guitar pick.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

RE: My Expanding Docket

Dear Indianapolis,

Please take your crazy elsewhere. I am full up here.

Love, Grace

Monday, October 26, 2009

In A World Where I Left My Laptop On The Floor

...and dogs could type, this is what you would learn:

WHOA! I could totally chew the edge of this screen. Mmm, maybe not. Hi, I'm Telly. I like to chew, but not tobacco, you know, just say no and all that. The Woman left her laptop on the floor, and I decided to tell you about a day in the life of ME!

I hate the workweek, because The Woman and The Man leave me in my spacious cage. The Woman, every morning, offers me a piece of chicken, and every morning, I fall for that trick and I end up in my crate. On my soft bed. And then I fall asleep before I can protest. Then the nice dog walker lady comes and I totally know how to play her. I give her sad eyes, and she gives me treats and rubs my belly.

When The Woman comes home I am nuts and race around in circles, fitting as many toys into my mouth as possible. I do this so she knows that I am cool. I think.

I like to chase my tail. I like to play with the dog down the street. I like to pee on the carpet steps, because it's really funny watching The Woman clean up the steps with Lysol, and then swearing when she realizes that she stained the steps with Lysol. I bark at the dog in the window and in the doorway, and The Man shakes his head and says, "Not the brightest crayon in box, are we?"

But I am the brightest crayon. I'll show him, because I know where he keeps his socks and boxers and I figured out how to open a drawer. Also, I know where he keep his laundry. The Man will regret this.

No matter what The Man and The Woman say, I still fit under the bed. I love it when The Man picks me up.

I've lost all my baby teeth, and I don't understand why The Woman looked at my teeth today and said, "Almost time! Snip, Snip!" What is a snip?

I don't understand why I'm not allowed to chew up the carpet, why I can't eat wood chips, pick up rocks, or eat the stuffing out of my puppy. See, I had a stuffed puppy that was nice and soft, but one day, it became evil puppy, and it was hell bent on conquering the world--The Man and The Woman's house--and so I had to destroy it. I was sad that it became evil puppy, so I tried to eat the stuffing.

The Woman sees me standing on her laptop. This means [O$%$4TY5 ;OQIJ F;OPW!!!!!!!!!!!

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BAD DOG! No biscuit!

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Yes, in a world where Tellys could talk, he would have lots to say to you.



Friday, October 23, 2009

Here Piggy Piggy

I am all about all things pig.

Oh, bacon. I just fried up a whole package of bacon to use in my delicious (de-lish-ish!) potato cheddar soup. I made an entire stock pot full, using seven pounds of potato. Why so much? Because I am pleased to tell you that Baby H is still hanging around, coming in at one month today. So instead of casseroling the mom and dad, I am souping them. But yes. A whole package of bacon.

Oh, and the bacon popped and spit in my eye. So my eye burns, and can you get swine flu from bacon? With my luck, it's possible.

Speaking of swine flu, I got this picture as a text message today:



Underneath it, my sister typed: "Got swine?"

Yes, it's true. My sister has swine flu. She's locked herself in the basement, and she speaks to everyone through the basement door. They leave food on the top step. She only comes out at night and creeps around the house then. My oldest niece Prada says Auntie Grace, she's become nocturnal. I wouldn't be surprised if Jedi riggs up some communication device, with one tin can on each end and a strong that stretches from the basement door to the couch where my sister is convalescing (certainly not malingering) in front of the fireplace.

Although this isn't pig related, one of the attorneys I work with had to take her husband to the hospital today because he probably has meningitis. Though, at this point, it wouldn't surprise me to learn that it was swine flu.

I need to get my flu shot. I bought more hand sanitizer. I sanitized my office space with it. I might have a problem with germs.

Of course, there is the metaphorical pig. It's almost Halloween. I love chocolate. This means there is about to be too much chocolate in my house for me to handle. It's good to know I'm not the only one with this problem. However, that does not stop the end result of Vor walking in on me stuffing my face with chocolate, chocolate smeared all over my face and fingers, and me going, What?

If a pig showed up at our house, I'm not sure what would happen at this point; be eaten, or eat us, or stand up on its hind legs and say, hey! Friends!. Or maybe just sneeze on us.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

First Things First

Is it over yet?

Well, yes. We are moved in. I mean, there's organizing, and re-arranging, and sighing over things that will have to wait a long time (Dear Flat Screen T.V., I know just the spot for you; Dear King Size Mattress, I heart you and dream about you every night).

You know what else is over? Summer vacation. Winter vacation. Spring break, fall break, skipping class for a mental health day, snow days, ice days, rainy days, and just about any other kind of day I can think of. Yes, people, Monday was it: I started my first professional job. My career. Woo hoo!

I know I've said before that I'm bit nervous about the whole court thing, but let me tell you: I AM NERVOUS ABOUT THE SPEAKING IN COURT THING. There, I said it. My first hearing date was set for months away, so of course, I will be in court tomorrow for an emergency hearing. The ink is barely dry on my attorney number and I will be in there, doing my thing, tearing it up. I texted Velvet from work, telling her that my organization had gone collectively insane if they thought it was a good idea to let me out. She agreed. I mean, she agreed in the sense that she felt the same way, of course.

This feels good. I feel nervous, excited, unprepared, and ready. It just feels right. Finally.

Clearly, I found a pair of deep red shoes.

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As I was thinking about the fact I did it, finished law school, tackled it, and am now taking on my job, I felt a small hand knock somewhere in the corners of my mind.

It's hard to remember firsts sometimes without remembering who is not there to reach them with you. Who should be celebrating not only for you, but with you, in her own right. Ellyce should be doing this too. It's not right, and never can be made to be so.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Be Right Back

I know you just desperately miss me. But:

1. I was sworn in yesterday. I now have to uphold the Indiana and US Constitution, so help me God. I am officially in!

2. Mom & Dad are here, helping finish the move and playing with Telly.

3. We are finishing moving in.

So, I'll bbl, brb, ttyl, ttfn. As my nieces and nephews would say.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Bookish

I mentioned (yesterday? the day before? something so simple as checking a date seems...meh) that I have a major piece of writing in progress, and since there is no one here to talk it out with (except the dog, but he doesn't count, because when I talk to him, he tries to hump my leg, and I don't think that's praise for my ideas) I am spitting it out here.

First, there is the problem of what to tackle first. I have a large collection of poetry, which is organized according to a theme. There are some missing connectors, some rough pieces, and so on, but it's there. But...I mean, a book of poetry? Have you looked in a bookstore lately? It seems like they will publish any long haired person with secret pain and a pen. Maybe I fit into that category, but maybe not. I'd rather hope not. I'm just reluctant to move forward with it.

Then there's the book. It's half formed in my head, and I think the best way to deal with it is to treat it like a memo or a brief. All you lawyers out there, shudder: IRAC. Issue-Rule-Application-Conclusion. This was basically what I did in undergrad, and it got me through law school and the bar exam. Thus, some form of it should be useful in this process. I felt slightly encouraged when I heard an author on NPR giving writing tips; she said keep a notebook, jot the ideas down, and then work on weaving all the small incidents together. Check. Got that part done.

A small part of me wonders what happens if and when I get this thing to the point that the collection of poems is at. Will I then say bah! They publish anyone with a pen and a bad story about dogs/mental illness/chick lit. Do I have a committment problem?

Uh, yes. I already know this about myself. I'm afraid to commit to some things because I'm afraid of failing. There's my two cent psychoanalysis of myself. When I decide I want or need to do something, I usually need to burn all the bridges behind me. When I chose law school, I firmly shut away all classic literature, locked up my beloved thesis paper, threw out all information on the GRE or GMAT or whatever the hell it was, and took on an impressive debt load so that I had to finish school, because dropping out of law school = bankruptcy.

There must be a less extreme way to go about this little project.

All I hear is the chirping of a cricket.

Monday, October 12, 2009

We Need to Simplify Our Lives, Redux

Moving day was crazy. Moving day was made even more crazy by the fact that it took place over a week and a half, and for awhile, we were living in both places, and I thought my head was going to explode with the sheer confusion of it all.

At this new house (also known as OUR house) we have a three car garage. It is completely full of out stuff. Okay, fine, it is completely full of our crap. Is this really necessary? Do I need all this stuff? I already did the if you haven't worn it in a year, take it to good will run, along with the would you die of embarrassment if Judge Fill-in-the-blank saw you in the grocery store in this run. There are blankets and knick-knacks (oh God, the knick knacks. You know who they all come from? My mother in law. She firmly believes that downsizing means giving it all to us, because she cannot bear to throw it away herself), there are pots and pans, there are NO MATCHING PIECES OF FURNITURE. None. Not a single one.

I will also admit to a moment of panic today. It was the panic felt by someone who has lived closer to the downtown area of a city, where there are lots of young people and bars. Today, I sat on my emerald green lawn with Telly. I looked to the left and saw kids. I looked to the right and saw kids. I looked straight ahead and saw kids.

I decided, for the sake of my sanity, it was better if I didn't turn around.

They are everywhere here, like the weeds did back at our old house. Their parents all stand outside, watching them play, gossiping, drinking wine, fliping their hair, and touching their strands of pearls. Okay, I made up the part about the pearls, but it doesn't seems unlikely.

Is simplifying our lives at odds with this neighborhood? Have we sold out? Should we have fled towards a nice, small condo in the city and sold most of our stuff?

Kids are the plan eventually (See Grace. See Grace run! Go Grace go! Grace? You can stop now!), and I think kids require lawns (check). And dogs (check). And other kids (check, check, check, check).

So, we shall simplfy in other ways. Like refusing to take any more kinck knacks. I mean it.

All For the Want of a Shoe

I have to find (and by have, I mean I must because the rare shopping urge has me in its grips, and will not let go until the task is done) find a pair of dark red, perhaps burgundy, that really pretty red wine color, shoes to go with my navy blue suit.

That I am wearing to my swearing in ceremony. I swear, if I don't find these shoes, I will take it as a sign from God that I was not meant to swear in as an attorney and I only got this far on sheer dumb luck.

I've arrived here, and looking back, I'm not sure how.

I never had the doctor-lawyer-president-marine biologist dreams that many kids have. My dreams were writer and illustrator of children's books, and then just writer, then to poet, and from there to English professor who is published with something, anything. I still do these things. I write, and I have a large folder of my works in progress. I have one large work in progress, which sadly, has been on hold for about a year. I need to fix that. I'm always doubtful about my skill as a writer or a poet, but the pieces I write are usually received well, by uninterested parties. And of course, Vor, but he surely does not count as an uninterested party.

What I am saying is, how did I get here? I am about to become a lawyer, which on its face, seems to be the thing farthest away from the creative and deeply litarery life I had always imagined. Why am I here, when I unpack my Virginia Woolf books and wistfully run my fingers along the binding and remember I want white petals that float when I tip the basin up. I have a fleet now swimming from shore to shore. . . . And I will rock the brown basin from side to side so that my ships may ride the waves. Some will founder. Some will dash themselves against the cliffs. One sails alone. That is my ship. . . . They have scattered, they have foundered, all except my ship which mounts the wave and sweeps before the gale and reaches the islands where the parrots chatter and the creepers . . . (The Waves). And I type that from memory. When I can't sleep, I recite T.S. Eliot in my head, like a soothing lullaby, like the mermaids singing, each to each. Except I have told those mermaids that I won't listen to them sing anymore.

These things I always thought I would be are gone now, and here I am, touching my suit, ten minutes away from work, and twenty away from the courthouse. Maybe Rhoda had it right-- I have to put off my hopeless desire to be Susan, to be Jinny. That doesn't mean that I cannot stretch my toes so that they touch the rail at the end of the bed; I will assure myself, touching the rail, of something hard. Now I cannot sink; cannot altogether fall through the thin sheet now. . . (The Waves)

I am me, still; I can be creative in this job. I can still write, for myself and maybe someday for others.

ButsohelpmeGod, if I do not find a pair of deep red shoes to go with this suit, I will take it as a sign.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

We Need to Simplify Our Lives

Holy Moving Day, Batman.

That is all.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Just For The Record

I don't understand the rabid mongoose way of practicing law. I really don't.

Can you tell it was a bad day? Does it just shine through?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

It's Totally Legit

...but I don't wanna is a perfectly valid excuse when faced with more packing, loading, driving, unloading, unpacking, crawling, climbing, pushing, dragging, twisting, turning, and cleaning.

No matter what anyone says, know this.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Parenthetically

Since it's Monday, you don't get a Blog Salad, but this sure will be a mish mash of things.

We have no couch. It's over at the new house, and we are still living on the old one this week. This means that we have a futon mattress on the floor, and it also means that Telly has found his new calling in life--to sit on the futon. To sit on you sitting on the futon. To try and dig into the futon. To run and jump on the futon (and when I say run and jump, I mean flying leaps). It was cute this morning. Now, it's annoying.

Also, I passed the bar. I know you know this already, but I keep repeating it in my head, because I'm not sure it happened. I'm still so PTSD about the whole thing (nightmares, sweats, flashbacks) that I can't shake it. It's really over. (OR IS IT? Haha. No, I know, that wasn't funny at all.) I am so ready to start working. I can't wait to move full time into my little office (read: cubicle--I know, what kind of lawyer has a cubicle instead of an office? The public interest kind!)

Speaking of work, I am going to get torn to shreds on Wednesday. I'm on a case where this attorney thinks s/he is, (oh God, please excuse me, but there is no other way to put this) the shit. God's gift to law. This attorney called screaming the other day about this case, sent nasty emails, and has decided to bring on a second chair for this hearing. No one does this in family law, unless the second chair is someone who is being trained. Which is not the case here. Sigh. Wednesday is going to be loooooooong. I just have to keep my lips stiff, and remember the kid involved. This kid needs help, because s/he isn't getting it at home.

Baby H is still hanging on. She was born a little over a week ago, so this is more than we expected. Thus, I am making another casserole today. I suspect the new momma needs a nap--something that can be achieved if she doesn't have to make dinner. I got to hold her a few days ago, and it gave me quite a bit to think about, and to talk to Vor about. (That is a post in and of itself. One of those long rambling posts where I am clearly trying to work something out in my head, and all I do is leave you scrolling down going, why the hell am I reading this? She is nutty. Nutty. Not that you aren't thinking that right now.)

There are parenthesis galore going on here.

Um. Telly just ate the tail off one of his toys. I better go fish that out of his jaws before I have to fish it out of somewhere else.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Hoosier Lawyer

Yeah? Who's your lawyer? Oh, that would be me.

I know you can't see me, but rest assured, I am doing the happy dance for passing the bar!