February 2nd, 2006

cocked and loaded


I honestly feel I have nothing to say.

Which is weird, because I just talked on the phone to a total stranger for nearly half an hour. And weird, because anyone who knows me would say that my not having anything to say is a thing of beauty and a joy forever unusual.

*sings softly* Hey ho, anybody listening? Hey ho, anybody here? Hey ho, anybody listening? ..........Anybody caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaare?

Heh. That was the part of the refrain from a gospel song I sang in Messengers when I was 17.

So, what the hell is the matter with me?

General malaise and lethargy?
Post-party let-down?
Allergic reaction to quiet clean house?
Low Comment Count Syndrome?
Mid-life crisis crossed with head-cold fog?
Seasonal Affective Disorder compounded by the Swedish-Winter Blahs?


However, I am VERY happy about the fact that "brain freeze" is among the new-for-2005 entries in the 11th Edition Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. It's about damn time.

This Made Me Happy, Too: A Few of the Internet's Favorite Things

Since I was a kid, I've made lists of my favorite things. They are carefully titled "My Favorite Things, Age (and then whatever age I was when I wrote them), and they are all tightly filled, single-spaced, hand-written, 2- or more-page lists of ALL my favorite things, by category. My favorite colors, birds, movies, foods, etc. I don't think I've done one since I was about 16 or so, but I was pretty regular for the years inbetween there. They crack me up now, although I was dead serious about them then. It was really important to me to chronicle the things I liked, for some reason. I never showed them to other people, they were just for me. My handwriting got progressively less round and curly each year, and my tastes actually stayed fairly stable. I didn't get wildly passionate about my favorites, and I rarely had just ONE favorite in any category. I spread the love around.

I think my idea of what a favorite things list is has changed a lot since I was 16. Oh, I could still do a list like those childhood lists (and they'd probably still look pretty similar, although I never would have expected that sushi would top the list for Favorite Foods one day), but my list of favorite things has a lot more to do nowadays with sensations, feelings, emotions, and serendipitous moments than with concrete choices between certain colors or movie stars or flowers (even though peachy-orange roses never go amiss).

My list of favorite things nowadays also includes things that my friends, my family, and my loved ones do that make me smile. Isn't it more interesting to say that one of my favorite things is an unexpected bouquet from my husband (which, ha! that WOULD be unexpected! :P heh) than to say that one of my favorite things is snapdragons?

My favorite things are both wider and narrower than they used to be. Finding a kindred spirit through the writing/art/photography she posts on her website every day, the fresh-baked-bread smell of my husband's skin, and the way my children's cheeks glow after a romp in the snow. Frozen chocolate chip cookies, a parking place near the door in a full parking lot, sleeping in and waking slowly on a Sunday morning.

Getting a joke in Swedish, an unexpected package in the mail with books or American candy in it, Karin sleeping through the night. The moment when Martin's incredibly contagious laughter bursts out in a bubble of joy, the first few moments of a backrub, the silent feeling of awe and satisfaction that comes over me when I close a really good book that I just finished for the first time. Realizing I DO have something to say after all.