Thursday, June 27, 2013

Too Busy

Not to join the chorus of "I'm so important that's why I am so busy" jerkwads that we all know... but look, pals, I'm busy. I'm overwhelmed these days in a way I never have been. But too busy to write? What is too busy to write - really?

My friend Kelly said to me last month, "Ten minutes is still ten minutes. And ten minutes usually turns into more than that." I'll admit that it does sometimes - and sometimes that ten minutes is an absolute grind. The plank workout move of creative output. Every second a burn.

But. She's right. Ten minutes is indeed ten minutes. And that's over an hour a week even when it's ground out one painful second at a time, which is more than I can say for the last three months. So here's to a week back in the saddle again; the saddle I'll fall out of again of course, (I'm no optimistic fool) - but a saddle happy to find a little, teeny, tiny groove in once more.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Every Single Morning:

I don't want to make my bed.

And every single night, when I come home from work: I am pleased and content to see a made bed.

But you'd think it would get easier, right? It would start becoming automatic? Even flossing is starting to feel automatic (three cheers for a new year's resolution finally embedding into daily life!) but I've been making the bed for almost three years (I think) now - and it does not get one ounce easier each morning.

Over n out, your might-just-have-a-Case-of-the-Mondays-blogger,

The Pig of (semi)Success.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Sometimes I get emotional.

Like over there, on the fundraising website for my trip to Tanzania. It's an emotional topic!

So, one month from today, I will have traveled 27.5 hours by air (Portland - Chicago - Zurich - Nairobi - Dar es Salaam) and then 6 to 8 hours by car (Dar es Salaam - Pommern) to arrive in the Iringa District of Tanzania, ready (?!) to volunteer.

But in case you don't want to (understandably) sully your soul by visiting a fundraising website, I'll share the sentimentality here, too:

ONE MONTH! We arrive in Dar Es Salaam in one month. What are we doing to prepare? Well, we've both shopped for quick-dry underwear and hiking boots, we've stocked up on Bonine and Imodium and bug spray. But right this minute? Well, Meggie is in France with 30 parentless fifth graders, as part of her last week teaching her regular students. And Emily is reading Paul Theroux's DARK STAR SAFARI, as if it will prepare her properly for German East Africa, later called Tangyanika, later still known as Tanzania.
But to the real point... having reached the goal of $3100, we're stunned. It's hard to express at times to people who ask why fundraising is humbling, but perhaps this might explain it... 
By going away from work, and family, to do this trip, by attacking our bucket list with a BIG entry marked off, we could have financially set ourselves back a year, or more, of all disposable income. But insetad, we have your help. And your help lets us continue to have a life in Portland - it lets us buy baby shower gifts and buy a round of drinks for birthday girls; it lets us put a tiny $20 bill into the ROTH IRA this month, and lets us get takeout on an exhausted Friday night. It allows us to still remain a part of this daily world, the social and professional and personal, while ALSO scratching off the bucket list item, and THAT is humbling. It is not us alone in the world taking this trip; it is only with your help that we're able to go (literally) half way around the world to volunteer and immerse ourselves in a wholly new experience. YOU are letting us be in both this world, and that world, and you are helping us take it all in with our huge, patient, loving, very scared hearts. 
So - thank you. Thank you for sponsoring and thank you for considering it. It means, quite literally, the world to us.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


In the same cursed stretch of road last week, I rode my bike past a crow.

A crow with a broken back or broken wing, or both - flopping around in a circle, trying to lift off in absolute vain. And as I rode past, staring in complete horror with an open mouth at this tortured creature I thought, it is too big for me to run over it and make a difference, and it is circling itself out of the way of oncoming traffic.

And then?

The sound of about twenty other crows, flying in from Hell (I assume) not to save their brother - but to put him out of his misery.

See what I'm saying about bicycling = connection to the neighborhood!? Shit's getting real, people.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


To, ahem, quote the dog from "Up."

When you ride your bike, it's true what they say - you become newly connected to your neighborhood, and your route, by the smells, the sounds, the feeling of pedaling uphill each vertical foot.

And this intimacy of enjoying your route also means that a lone, dashing, daring, gutsy, inspirational and incredible squirrel - who darts from under a car in front of a bike - is actual cause for genuine alarm. It could really mess you up! Or in this case, it could really mess up the guy in front of you - who almost hit it!

Tales from the road, and my wild urban life, indeed.