In Which No Irish Babies Were Harmed in the Making of This Modest Birthday Proposal

22 July 2003

As I told my mom to begin my e-mail to her this morning, Timprov arrived safely, and I hope Dr. Bill did, too. That was the central feature of yesterday, basically, that and a family game of telephone gone awry. I got a bunch of errands done. We had a coupon for 5% off, so I picked up a few things we won't eat immediately when I went to the grocery store. I don't worry about the cabinet (unrefrigerated) food as much -- if we have to pack that, we have to pack it, and a box of pasta and oatmeal won't kill us. (Probably won't make us significantly stronger, however.) It's the fridge stuff that worries me.

Anyway, anyway. As we were coming across the San Mateo, there were clouds pouring like liquid nitrogen over the hills. And it was only over the part of the hills closest to the bridge. Much better than the smoky glow on the Santa Clara County border on the way back.

I have come up with more birthday ideas! If you want to help me celebrate my birthday, you could update your long-un-updated journal! (Those of you who are on hiatus and have already sent me a birthday present -- that's right, those of you who are Peg -- I don't mean you. Just the lazybutts who haven't been updating without being on hiatus.)

Or here's a good one I think you should all pool your resources to do: get me some moving elves. I don't mean as opposed to stationary elves. (Although some stationery elves might be nice.) I mean elves that are specifically designed to help us move our stuff. They could live on the dust behind the bookcases and the tail ends of condiments we didn't want to move. And they could wear miniature, elf-shaped white undershirts and baggy, slouchy jeans, and would refrain from commenting on how many books we have. I'm all into this. I think you should do it. It'd be a great birthday present. Really.

And another birthday note on which there has been some confusion: you get five days to celebrate your birthday, but they don't have to be consecutive. You get to pick five days and declare them Your Birthday. And if something sucky is going to happen on your actual day of birth, there is no rule that says it has to count as one of your days. You can say, "I'm not doing jury duty on my birthday -- this is Not My Birthday!" You do get dibs on your actual birth date, though, so if someone else hasn't used all of their days, they can't steal your birthday. If you want to share it with them and celebrate together, that's another matter entirely. (Frankly, I think in many cases that's misguided if you don't actually share a birthday: why have one day of celebration, when you could have two, one for you and one for this other person? This sharing thing -- so overrated.)

I wrote a short-short yesterday out of the blue. "Moth Kin." Like with a lot of my short-shorts-out-of-the-blue, I have to ponder for awhile before I figure out whether it's worth anything to anybody else or whether it's just something I needed to do for myself. There are actually no moths in this story, in case you were wondering. I also worked on "Gilding the Dandelion."

My problem, as I've said in a couple e-mails lately, is that I want to do more of some things without doing less of other things, and I don't have that much wiggle room left to begin with. I keep coming up with things that seem like they'd be good ideas in some area of my life or work, and finding time for them is problematic. Maybe when we move somewhere that has amenities closer by and I don't have to drive half an hour or more to the library or to see friends or whatever.

I want more short stories without having less new novel stuff, and I want more editing without having less new work of whatever length. And I just don't think it works that way. My mom spent a lot of my middle childhood talking about economic alternatives, and time works that way, too.

But for today, there's time to work and time to hang out with the Timprov, and if Dr. Bill can manage it, there will be time to have him fix my back. And I'll fit other stuff around those things.

Ever since I decided on my birthday dessert, I've had "Kodachrome" in my head off and on. Which is better than yesterday's Vanya-voice, so hooray for that.

I had some pretty horrible moments yesterday, but I think things are a little more stable today. I hope so, anyway. I'm pretty determined about dragging my behavior into a less mopey category some days, even if there's not much I can manage to do with my mindset. But some days, I just need to let it all out. I think yesterday was one of those days. I hope there aren't too many of them coming up.

Back to Novel Gazing.

And the main page.

Or the last entry.

Or the next one.

Or even send me email.