Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Watching the space

Several months ago, a tired, run-down and empty building put brown paper over all the windows, hiding its plans from the outside world. A sign went up that said, simply, Watch This Space.

Almost every day since then, I’ve stopped at some point during my daily grind to stare at it. Sometimes there were rustlings behind the paper. I’ve never seen a person come or go, but sometimes I hear them moving around in there, scraping sounds that could be furniture…or somebody applying drywall…or…something…

Sometimes, the door is cracked open and I can peek inside and see…well, not much, really. Paint brushes on top of closed cans; a floor covered with neatly taped newspaper; ladders leaning against walls and looking oddly abandoned; that kind of thing.

Watch This Space, the sign confidently says.

So I watch. I watch, and wait, and wonder what it will be. When it will be.

Some days, I’m sure it will soon be something amazing; I think of the miracles fresh paint and carpet can bring about, how the application of human ingenuity and affection can breathe such life into mere things, and I look at the brown paper and the Watch This Space sign and envision Boutique d’Awesome, which will have more amazing, almost magical things than can I can imagine.

Other days, I find my attitude to be a bit less sunny. I stare at the motionless place, the hasn’t-actually-changed-in-all-this-time building on the run-down street in this economically depressed town and find myself certain that whatever it was going to be, whatever it thought it was going to become…it hasn’t got a prayer. It’s going to just stay nothing, forever.

 It’s just going to stay like this, promising…well, promising nothing.

 An instruction to “watch this space” doesn’t actually promise a damn thing, come right down to it. Shoot, could just be a big old joke, you know? Let’s pretend we’re going to come up with something GRAND, and see how long we can keep people stopping to see if it’s there yet, hahahaha!

And then I’m rather annoyed, because I feel like I’ve been played.

Except that the next day, or the day after that…well…I’d swear I heard something that might have been somebody installing…ovens? Or moving a piano? An Irish accent, or the chime of crystal.

Definitely there’s…something…coming soon…probably…maybe…

So I keep watching the space. Maybe today. Or tomorrow. Or next month. Almost certainly by second quarter this year, don’t you think?


It’s probably pretty close to ready. Almost has to be.

I just need to…be patient. Give it the time it clearly needs. Have a little faith.

A little trust.

Except, it’s taking longer than I’m used to waiting.

And I don’t like that empty building. It’s creepy, and unnatural. And…kind of sad, too. Like it wants to be something glamorous, or meaningful, or useful, or…something.

Something that bustles, instead of just sitting there trying to work up the energy to finish what it started.

It wouldn’t bug me so much if it weren’t my own mind I’m talking about here. Which has been just kind of…sitting there for about three months longer than forever, insincerely muttering “…working on it…” at me every time I’ve asked how things were going, whether it had anything, you know, to share with the class.

It really does feel like I’m a run-down building trapped in some kind of infinite loop of any second now, I’m going to have a “ta-da!” moment, and then you’ll see, I’m pretty sure whatever-it-is that I’m trying to finish coming up with is going to be pretty cool, and you’ll be, like, WOW, and I’ll be, like, I KNOW, RIGHT?! and then…we’ll be HAPPY and BUSY and ENERGETIC again, instead of this weird, tired, EMPTY, I-just-wanna-siddown-and-stare-at-something-that-doesn’t-WANT-anything-from-me thing…

It doesn’t even have the decency to be something dramatic like depression, or significant psychological event, or anything else I could, with a straight face, use as an excuse for the overall meh-ness I’ve been exhibiting for a while now.

OH no. It’s nothing new, it’s nothing meaningful…arguably, it’s even a good thing, a part of a natural cycle of feast-and-famine that puts me in a state of (sorta) rest.

I’m usually a person who can find ways to complicate her life without even trying, and be convinced that it’s a hundred kinds of awesome. But every so often, for no apparent reason, well, my little ship rushes headlong into the doldrums and the sails go pfffffffffth*flutter*flop and, well…there I am. Stuck. Sitting there. Rocking on becalmed seas, waiting for a breeze that feels like it will never come.

I never see it coming. It always bewilders me. No matter how many times it has happened to me throughout my life, I always find myself dumbstruck by its advent. What the…?! Whaddya mean, ‘Don’t know, don’t care, don’t wanna, leave me alone, I’m tired’?! C’mon, let’s do…SOMETHING! Let’s…make…maybe we could…you know what would be cool? Huh? you know what would…c’mon, work with me here, I can’t finish that sentence without you, Creativity, let’s go, OFF the bench…c’mon!...HERE we go…!

And it’ll make a half-hearted effort, rustle some papers around, get out the brushes and the cans of paint, set a ladder against the wall, point at a few items that might do with a makeover…and then while I’m not looking, it just waddles off to the nearest chair, plops down, and flips on a video game or starts a new anime series or buries its nose in a book and refuses to look up.

You know we REALLY need to get the seedlings started for the spring planting, right? I’ll ask.


Hey. HEY. Talkin’ to you here! I was thinking of casting on a vest or something. What do you think? Maybe I could make…something…you know…vest-y…with YARN?


So! Um! How about…you know that thing you were…there was, it was, like…? You wanna…?


sigh…ooookayyyy, maybe not…

Now, I know how this will go down. Just when I think that this time, maybe it’s really forever; maybe I used up the very last of my energy somehow, maybe I’m just all dried up, maybe…oh perish the thought!...I have become a grownup, and this is how they are, you know, just all go to work, come home, yell about chores and homework and dishes and go to bed so we can get up and do it all again the next day…right when I’m starting to say to myself, you know, it’s probably a good thing, because, it IS rather restful, you know, this whole ‘I don’t feel like doing anything, I’m just going to sit here and do NOTHING instead’ and after all, you really SHOULD act your age, because being a goofball is a bit…ahem…well, YOU know, at YOUR AGE for heaven’s sake…you could at least PRETEND to be mature now and then…right about then, as I’m reconciling to being just kind of blah and deciding it’s just fine by me…I’ll suddenly hear myself thinking…

…ever so quietly…but oh so brightly…

…oooooooo…you know what would be COOL…?

And ten minutes later I will be happily overcomplicating my life again, up to my elbows in projects no sane person would ever undertake, complaining about things being crazy then turning right around and going, “How cool is this!” like it makes perfect sense to carve smooshed-together bars of almost-used-up soaps into blobs that look like squashed zucchinis and insisting they are ‘obviously’ walruses and such.

But until then…well…there’s really not much I can do, except believe that something is happening behind the papered-up windows and shut doors, and wait patiently to see what it is.

Watch the space, and wait for it to become a sign.

Aaaaaaaany day now…


(Patience: not my strong suit)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

And now, midair blogging!

Apparently in the years between 'the last time I flew' and 'now,' the human race has made a few evolutionary having Wifi available at 30,000 feet.

I just spent the last hour and a half playing Warcraft FROM THE PLANE.

I had to do it, just 'cause I COULD.

I'm on my way home from a business trip to Charlotte, NC; I think it was an excellent trip and am very pleased with how much I learned while I was there...and can't WAIT to get home. While four days can hardly be considered anything like an EPIC amount of time away from home, it was, juuuuust enough for the internal grumbling to start.

Shower not hot enough. Food not spicy enough. Food too spicy. Ran out of books to read. Wireless too slow. Stupid chair too 'bouncy.'

Etc, etc, etc.

Plus, of course, the eerie quiet; the inescapable feeling of having forgotten something that comes with being away from the family. The same constant noise I complain about when home becomes, in its absence, a feeling not unlike being watched, or that maybe you left your keys on the table at the restaurant.

Only, not so definite. Just a vague feeling of Amiss, the sense that not all is where it ought to be...and the slow, steady realization that what is out of place

It will be good to get home to my Chaos; to be made irritable by the noise and the mess, the constant mommy-mommy-mommy, the daily dose of nonsense and need.

Don't tell them I said so, because it would really wreck my cool, 'eh, whatever, you're-ok-I-guess' thing...but I surely have missed those Denizens of mine.

Yeah...I really kinda have...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Perhaps I shall call it The Round Tuit...

'Course, if I were going to call it the "round" tuit, I really should be making it, uh, a CIRCLE-ISH shape, instead of a bunch of long RECTANGLES sewn together. And "square" tuit really doesn't have the same 'hehe, see what I did there? Because I finally got aROUND to it?!' punch. BUT AT THE SAME TIME, I don't WANT a *round* blanket - I want a *square* one.

I know. I too shudder at the life-or-death Drama of this. Although I'm sure I will be RICH after selling the rights to my life's story to Hollywood.

Ahem. Aaaaaaaanyway - you know how after you've made a pair of socks, there always seems to be JUST ENOUGH yarn left over the you can't bear to (gasp!) throw it away, but at the same time there really isn't enough to DO anything with it, so, you put the micro-ball of scraps into a box or bag somewhere for, like, eight years, and then it gets to the point where you've tripped over the box one time too many and so you say to yourself, "Self! That's it! The time is NOW! I'm going to just...cast on 40 stitiches and knit strips in plain garter grabbing whatever random ball comes to hand as each one runs out until it is GONE!"?

Point. Reached.

Monday, February 11, 2013


As I’ve been pondering the changes we’re making and the budget changes I’m going to undoubtedly be making because of them, one thing that keeps coming back into my mind is how bizarre it is that having a reliable, same-every-time paycheck is…foreign to me.

I’m not accustomed to approaching a budget the way the vast majority of Americans do: Being able to say “I can count on this much money coming in, on the following days…”

For me, budgeting has usually been done with more of a high/low estimation of what I would probably be bringing home – trying to guesstimate for each month how many days I wouldn’t be paid for due to somebody being sick or the company being closed for a holiday, trying to keep a read on how likely it was that the project would be continued following the latest round of budgeting by the client, and so forth.

The idea of having two paychecks that will arrive at exactly the same times each month for exactly the same amounts…is a little hard for me to get my arms around.

But I suspect I’ll get used to it.

I’m almost to the point of actually doing stuff at work; up until now, it’s all basically been “research” – reading through approximately 32,000 pages on various Wiki libraries about which parts go with what parts by huh-now?! methods.

I’ve been enjoying the relatively free time while it lasts. And trying to make my work-day eight hours and then HARD-STOP.

I need to get into the habit of not attempting to do “everything” myself; and of making sure I split my attention more evenly between work and home.

And also I need to take better care of my garden. Last year was a pretty rotten one, all things considered; and it was entirely because I didn’t put in the same effort I had before, choosing instead to allow myself to be dragged into all-night coding “parties,” working over weekends on projects I knew were doomed to failure no matter what I tried, but, gamely wading in and trying anyway.

It’s going to be another interesting year.

Can’t wait to see where it leads us.