January, 2009 Archive

Singalong with Lucas

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

Back in December Claire got a job in a phone center marketing upgrades to web orders.  To support her efforts at achieving independence and paying rent, we have taken on babysitting for Lucas while she works.  He takes a two to three hour midday nap and otherwise is easy to look after and fun to be with.

We’ve been going to the Singalong at Boo Boo records, a fifteen year institution I happened to hear about last month from a lady in the City Hall Parking Structure elevator. It’s not publicized.

The woman who leads it is named Heidi.  She wears funny glasses and shoes and passes the hat afterward. I dont think BooBoo’s charges for the space.   An underground club scene Wednesdays  10:15 to 10:45 A.M.

Phantom (of the Opera) Marx 1992-2009

Monday, January 26th, 2009

Phantom 2007

We had  Phantom put down today.  She’d been meowing loudly on and off for several days, though still friendly and purring.  The vet said she had cancer and would soon  be unable to eat.

Joe gave her to Claire in 1992 as a replacement for Moonshadow, who was mortally wounded in a fight the day we left for our five month trip to Europe. Claire remembered feeding her as a kitten with milk dripped from her mouth.  She named him for the Phantom of the Opera.

Phantom was a great family member–independent, friendly with everyone, affectionate and tolerant with both grandkids.  She remained an outdoor cat her whole life and helped us control rodents.  We couldnt spoil her.  A scoop of cat chow per day was all she could digest.

Here are some pictures from various times in her life.

Inauguration Day

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

I woke up this morning with a cough, stomachache, headache and sore back.  No appointments today except babysitting, and I wanted to see the inauguration.   Jan needed the day to prepare for the long city council meeting tonight.  I decided to stay in bed watching on our snowy, cable-less TV as long as possible.  Claire got here with Lucas during the oath of office.  The baby was happy to sit next to me with his two Thomas train cars, though he kept looking at me anxiously when I cried, before, during and after the speech.

Obama carries the public pain of these last eight years along with the historical pain of African-Americans on light and supple shoulders.  The evocations of Martin Luther King and Lincoln mix with those of Michael Jordan. His language is exquisite. His sternness and smiles overpower me like my father’s when I was two.

What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility – a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

I believe every word of this. But I only feel that satisfaction sometimes, because I know how hard it is to give my all, and I cant always do it.

Last night I finished work on a speech for the Focus the Nation Teach-In on February 5. To juxtapose it with the President’s utterance today is  hybris.  But at various moments while I watched and wept this morning, pieces of it came into my mind and made me both ashamed and proud.

Idaho Visit January 2009

Sunday, January 18th, 2009

Sunset approach to the Valley



Joyful reunion. Amy cooks Elk steaks for dinner. New snow.