Thursday, February 21, 2013


We had a party for Valentine's Day where everyone was supposed to supply a poem.  Chris submitted an adaptation of Alan Ginsberg's poem, 'Howl,' dedicated to me, that I thought was worthy of  documentation:

Howl (Of The Single Mother)

I saw the best parents of my generation
Destroyed by madness, starving, hysterical
Half naked
Dragging themselves through the child-ridden streets at dawn
Looking for an angry fix

Afflicted, by angel-headed hipsters
Cursing the absentee fathers and cruel fates
I leave you my ambiguous legacy
Of Theo and vicarious adventure
May it get you through the ashcan cemetery dawns.

--Chris Gregory

Also, a quote: 
"I'm only an absentee father when I'm not here."- C. Gregory

Monday, February 11, 2013

I'm Free

Today I made my last car payment!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Top 10 signs you know your house is cold

1. you go outside to get warm.
2. you wear your coat inside.
3. after you cook something you leave the oven door open and stand in front of it.
4. at night you want to go to bed so you can get under the covers.
5. when you contemplate building a fire when it's 65 outside.
6. when you want to walk on your treadmill because it will warm you up.
7. when the kids tell you their cold ( kids are never cold ).
8. the cat finds a spot of sun coming through the window to sleep.
9. when you research  how much it would cost to put in a whole house heating system and $2500 doesn't sound that high.
10. you want to pay someone to turn your whole house so the sun comes in the kitchen windows.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Get The Clock

In the beginning, there was this picture:

I mean, who doesn't like a picture of dead sisters, pleasingly arranged in a geometrically balanced fashion?

Then Beth, in a moment of genius, made this work of art:

and gave it to me for my birthday.  When I opened my present, I was so stunned by the rush of beauty and symbolism (time waits for no is never truly centered...your other sisters didn't get you presents because they are deadbeats...where exactly is the best place to hang up a clock with dead people on it?...), that I just stood there and blinked at her for a minute. Truly, the glory of the dead sister clock is a lot to take in all at once.

My moments of shock and awe cost me, however.  Beth measured my reaction on the BES (Beth Enthusiasm Scale) and found me wanting. Before I knew what was happening the clock had been repossessed and no amount of protesting could convince her that I was worthy.  I felt the loss sorely, but it didn't matter.  The clock was gone.

The summer flew by and we returned to Atlanta and moved into a new house. Unpacking the boxes and setting out our things, I couldn't shake the feeling that it just wasn't right.  Sure, the place looked nice, but kind of...tame.  It needed something. Something personal. Something interesting. Something quirky. Something exactly like a dead sister clock.

I called Beth:
Me: "Beth, forgive me.  I was wrong. I love the clock. I need the clock. Send me the clock."
Beth: .......
Beth: "No. Way."

What could I do? I wanted that clock, but I'm on the other side of the continent. So I did what I do a lot lately when I need a fixer. I turned to Rachel. Now, Rachel isn't much of a liar but she can snucker like nobody's business. Plus she was headed to California for the holidays. As I drove her to the airport, I looked at her earnestly:

"Rachel. Return with honor, and my clock. And if you have to pick one, get the clock."

 Skillfully, Rachel wrangled an invite to stay at the Lawrence house. With a few well-placed questions and keen powers of observation, she was able to triangulate the exact location of the clock, wait until the coast was clear, grab it off of the laundry room wall and stuff it into her suitcase.  Then she loaded her suitcase back into the car so Beth wouldn't notice it was ticking.

I am happy to report that the dead sister clock now hangs in a place of honor in our hallway.

I know it's time to get up in the morning when the little hand is on dead Claire. And all is right with the world.