Saturday, November 03, 2007

"Do Something Weird"

So I was IMing with a friend at work yesterday. Well, I was at work, she was in Milan. As in Italy. We used to be cube neighbors in the office, and she wasn't very happy then. So she's making up for those unpleasant days by spending lots of time in Europe. She's off to Venice and Florence, then to Spain for a while. And as my Friday afternoon turned into evening and she described her fabulous new Italian boots, jeans, paramour, screenplay, the noise of the bar downstairs, I grew greener and greener with envy, much as I took pleasure in hearing about her exploits and her renewed happiness. She left me with the sage advice, "do something weird this weekend." I promised her I would and that I would report back.

I wondered what that weird act would be for hours. I decided I should try to incorporate more weird in my life in general. I went home, walked the dog in the dark (weird enough? No.), talked to M (ensconced in a cheap motel in Sacramento for a test Saturday morning, but a power outage had cruelly deprived him of the network TV watching he had been looking forward to), ate cheese toast for dinner, watched The Chumscrubber (enh, so-so, I fast forwarded through the last 20 minutes)…and that was it.

But I felt the need to *do* something, and while M wasn't there to influence me. Time was running out. So I pulled on my sweats, whistled for the dog, grabbed my wallet and drove to Mickey D's for drive-thru French fries. Yes, I know they're not vegetarian, and I rarely eat them…but it was supposed to be an out of the ordinary experience for me, remember.

I was planning to just head home after the grease run, but decided to push it a bit--I really should do something more, I thought. Where could I go? In our earlier conversation, M had given me the sad news that a huge, shapely oak tree we had long admired had been cut down. It grew in a vacant lot near his school, so we passed it often. Our city is trying to encourage building density rather than sprawl (which I am generally in favor of), so apartments were started in the empty lot. And while at first the tree seemed protected as the apartments went up, branches started breaking off, and a few days ago all the limbs had been shorn, leaving just the enormous trunk--it had towered over the three-story apartments. Maybe cutting it down was a safety measure--if it ever toppled, it would have caused a lot of damage. Or maybe it was just greed--I can only image the amazing lumber that could be milled from its heart. So I drove to the site and peered through the chain link gate to the place where the stump is. It was very dark and I couldn't really see anything, which maybe was good. But I cried all the way home and had to call M again and I'm actually starting to cry again as I type this. It just makes me so angry, the loss of something that took generations to be, something so incredibly beautiful and strong, but ultimately vulnerable.

So while some might think the weirdness is crying over a tree, that came pretty naturally to me. It was much stranger for me to be driving around town "late" at night (it was after 10:00 p.m. gasp) shoving fries in my cakehole with Rex riding shotgun, on the lookout for any chase-able creatures. I must be very closely related to cave dwellers--I don't go out much after dark unless M drives.

That may be the weirdest thing I do this weekend. But maybe not. Suggestions for weirdness welcome, but I also recommend you find your own weird. It's not too late to do something weird this weekend.


Hopefully M has finished his test on Professional Responsibility in Sacramento and is on the road home now. We spoke this morning before his test and he sounded perky, despite the jackhammers in the middle of the night repairing the power outage.


Time to get cleaning on the house, got my dad and stepmom visiting tomorrow, yay!


At 5:09 PM, November 03, 2007, Anonymous Kamala said...

Is staying in bed the entire day, reading Dodsworth weird?

At 6:59 PM, November 03, 2007, Blogger Michelle said...

Good for you! I think the weirdest thing I did today was go grocery shopping by myself. I'll have to try and think of something better tomorrow.

At 8:25 PM, November 03, 2007, Blogger elm said...

I am challenged. Could I ever imagine doing something weird. I would like to. I will let you know.


At 9:22 AM, November 04, 2007, Blogger bren said...

What if you feel that you've done too many weird things in your life? I should have gone to the beach with Don yesterday and checked out the naked man instead of being attached to my wheel.

At 2:21 PM, November 04, 2007, Anonymous Kamala said...

Then after my Sinclair Lewis marathon, I stayed up till one am watching 8 episodes (4 hours)of the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader reality show. That should do it for my foray into weirdness!

At 4:28 AM, November 06, 2007, Blogger K2 said...

I feel that McD french fries are veg, unlike starburst. What naked man?

At 6:29 AM, November 06, 2007, Blogger bren said...

It seemed very weird to Don to see a very large man naked on Manchester beach in November. (I've never seen anyone naked there, ever). He chatted with Don about the beach trash that Don was picking up, etc., and had a small dog with him, the size of Rex.

At 3:13 PM, November 06, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wasn't he cold? Was there shrinkage, Don? I also think Mickey D fries are now veg.

At 8:38 PM, November 06, 2007, Blogger bren said...

Thanks to global warming the naked man was quite comfortable with no shrinkage..that Don could tell.


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