Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Bad Words

When I was in Junior high I was infamous for my foul mouth. I made my science teacher, Mr. Long, cry once because of my language and another time because I put Mercury in the fish tank. (Not the nicest kid I know) I'm sure my foul mouth like many other things came mostly from my Mom but I had refined the art of the F word and made it something all my own. Then I learned about Jesus and how he doesn't want you to talk that way and I reformed my foul mouth for a good six years. Nary a 'Hell' or 'Damn' escaped my lips let a lone an F bomb, or an Al Levy as I call them now. Slowly there started to creep some 'mild language for color' as Kate called it in a letter to an old friend, nothing that would make a sailor blush or anything but gateway words that could lead to medium or even spicy language down the road if left unchecked.

I write all of this because lately I have been listening to the language I use more and more. I have a mental block when it comes to the Al Levys but there is still a whole palette of Colorful words that I don't remember starting to use again. Don't get me wrong I don't have any moral issues with profanity this is merely a personal study of my own language patterns. I think I have grasped on to some Post-Modern, hip, Christian, picture of the guy that knows his C.S. Lewis as much as he does his John Irving and can rattle off a line or two of either as the situation dictates. I find my self slipping in a curse word or two in conversations to some how show that I am not one of those fundamentalist that we all quietly fear, but my words are grating on me more and more as they escape my lips to breath on their own.

Along with the bad language my mother taught me the love of good words. She would often highlight great words used in letters or articles and email me some of the better ones she had found through out the day. Her mother before her instilled a love of words as she fought against prejudices and spoke with an authority and vocabulary that belied her education, or lack there of. Now I have my Beautiful, and her love of words, in my life and I am often passing my book over to her to find out what a particular word means. When I read her writing I am amazed at how she makes words dance in and out of each other with every turn of the phrase and turn of the page. When I was young I changed my vocabulary because I thought thats what Jesus wanted me to do. Now I know that Jesus is more concerned with my heart and my hands then he is with my language (and yes I know about Mat 12:34). Now I want to change my language because I want to be more like Debbie and Faye and Kate. I want my words to dance.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Walking the Line

Kate and I went out to dinner and a movie last night and after our steaks we saw the new Johnny Cash Biopic "Walking the Line" I am not a big Johnny Cash fan and I didn't know his story that well but the movie was phenomenal. From the chatter leaving the theatre even the hardcore Cash fans left happy. The music in the movie is another character that adds to the story in a way that Cameron Crowe hoped the music in Elizabeth town would but failed. Phoniex and Witherspoon do a great job as Cash and Carter and you are at times angry with them, hurting with them, but always oddly rooting for them. Go out and see this film, it is a great story, told well, with great acting, another classic T Bone Burnet sound track, and great themes to sit around and discuss with friends and strangers alike.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

So how about this weather

It was 74* last week and it is snowing today. We have had thunder storms, torrential down pours, tornadoes and snow flurries all in the last week. Just another week in middle america.

Monday, November 14, 2005

The Holidays are coming, the holidays are coming!

We are mere weeks away from the start of holiday mayhem and the past couple of weekends at home have felt like the calm before the storm. Kate will soon be done with the finance world and she has grand plans for decorating, entertaining, gift giving, and spreading holiday cheer. A couple of the ladies in the neighborhood are already competing for Kate's time as a baby sitter as well. Though her job is finishing her work is far from done. Kate wants to hang branches from the ceiling with lights and ornaments in some fashion or another. This sounds lovely and all but mostly it sounds hard. The plaster on our ceiling seems to have a tenuous hold at best as it is, adding branches might not be the most structurally sound decsion. I'm not sure what else she has in mind but what ever it is will mean a good deal of work for me. Truth be told I could use a good deal of work. I have been lazy lately and have lost a bit of that girlish figure that first won Kate's heart.

Pre-New Year's Resolution: Lose the belly and the bottom, find the muscles if I've got'um

So far in our lengthy marriage( 1 year, 1 month, 4 days) Kate has not been one for baking but I feel like this is the year she finds her internal Betty Crocker. I'm picturing coming home to the fragrant aroma of spiced cider and sugar cookies as Dean Martin croons how cold it is outside. We will see how close this is to reality.

Thanksgiving is in Iowa again this year while Christmas is in Oregon. Kate and I will be heading to the North West to meet up with the Rohl clan on the beautiful banks of the Columbia. Christmas with my family comes with some great traditions: Mom's incredible cooking, Mark's post basketball pouting as he realizes he is still number three in the family, My dad drinking himself into a stupor asking neighbors if they have seen his damn reindeer, Naughty Christmas carol sung around the fire, the annual lighting of the Christmas tree because Mark takes "How bout we light that tree" literal. Ah traditions! Every family has them.

What are some of your family holiday traditions?

Thursday, November 03, 2005

One More casualty in the war of the Kitchen

Last night when heading to the bathroom before bed I noticed something scurrying on the counter. Kate was a couple steps behind as our religion dictates and I stopped her from coming in the kitchen. She has told me time and time again that she does not want to see or know what happens to these mice. I stopped the little guy from his chosen escape route and forced him into a corner under some covering. While he hid there plotting his next move I gathered my arsenal of rodent ridders. Three sticky traps set up on one side of the counter so that anything that crossed that way would stick around for a while and a wooden spoon to direct the rascally rodent to the proper road. When I lifted the covering my witty nemesis ducked under it towards me and my wooden spoon and away from the traps. I lunged to the far left to keep him on the counter and he hid in the curtain above the sink. Well played my little enemy but you are just putting off the inevitable. I shook out the curtain into the sink and the mouse dropped to the bottom. I think he knew the jig was up because he started squeaking that high pitched squeal that sounds vaguely like "Please don't kill me James! Please, I promise I won't come back James, I promise." You are a liar and a felon and you will meet your maker this night my friend I told him and I grabbed a sticky trap. There were a number of dishes in the sink so I slowly pulled them out and then paced the trap in the middle of the sink. The mouse made a run for the right and was met with a wooden spoon to his tiny noggin that sent him back across the middle of the sink, across the middle of the trap. The battle was mine! A worthy advesery I must say but this was my night for victory.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The Kitchen really is the heart of the home

I really think our refridgerator is killing us. I know I brought this up before but it is getting worse. The thing is now starting to violently vibrate late at night. I am worried that Rick Moranis is going to show up and try to release some sort demon from it.

The smell of the Freon leak is now combined with two dead mice that were stuck to one of my sticky traps under a book shelf that has been re-christened as a kitchen storage cabinet. I found the mice yesterday after the tell tale smell that I have become way to acquainted with a SMBC got to powerful to ignore. That horrible smell is also added to the dog smell as Molly has decided that the kitchen is her new bedroom.

The kitchen is also home to the ever decreasing pile of laundry since the washing machine is there as well. Kate is nearly finished with her ceremonial cleaning of every stich of clothing after the bungling burglar rifled through her unmentionables.

So to summarize: piles of laundry + 2 day dead mice smell + Freon leak from fridge + stinky dog + Still settling dust from the floors + possessed fridge = one scary, stinky, seriously dirty kitchen!