Archive | Cat Lady Matters

Fall Back, Fall Back

By Lee Krasner

Daylights Saving Time today. Most view it as an extra hour of sleep. I view it as an extra hour of night.

In my head it’s a rhythm, a mantra, a sick, squalid croon. It’s why the Legend and I have fallen into old habits–him coming around only when it suits him, never ushering me into his world. Me swallowing whatever crumbs he offers, blowing up badly when they become indigestible.

Fall back, fall back.

The light is more beautiful, also more precious. There’s so little of it, you see. Precious little.

Yesterday I met with my eldest goddaughter on the Upper East Side. Both of us live in Brooklyn but make formal friendship dates as we’re getting acquainted as adults. She is in her early 30s and I am in my late 40s, high time we learned to appreciate each other as peers. We met when I was a recent college graduate and she an elementary schooler, so our relationship has undergone serious growing pains over the years. Me relying too heavily on her preternaturally adult wisdom, doing her the same disservice done to me decades before. Continue Reading →

Have You Seen This Cat?

From Jeffrey Henson Scales’ “House’s Barber Shop” series, 1987-1992

I’m sitting in the writerspace today, everyone click-clacking all around me, and big tears are silently sliding down my face.

I don’t know how to work on this book without letting in all the big feelings, and right now that means I am assaulted by the breakdown of the environment and our country and my relationship. Really, it’s my relationship. Sometimes I wish I were an ER doctor or an air traffic controller, someone whose work entailed putting out so many fires that there was no room for reflection or, goddess forbid, feelings. Sometimes I wish I were an actual firefighter. Continue Reading →

A Word from the Siren in Charge

1970s Alice Walker taking up plenty of space like the good womanist she is.

I’ve been really struck that, even now, I’m seeing a number of women couch their indignation about the Kavanaugh hearings with phrases like “of course not ALL men…” and “there are really good guys.” Obviously not all guys are awful but I’m tired of tiptoeing around male feelings.

Witness how, even as CBF was serving her civic duty at great personal cost, she was in a million palpable ways laboring to “make nice”–to apologize for taking up any space. It is vital that we women stop people-pleasing no matter what our conditioning. I get that those of us who sleep with anyone identifying as a man are deeply conflicted in a way that is still unacknowledged. That we may unconsciously fear wilting dicks even as we wave our flags. But the bottom line is we need to stop being cool girls and instead stand as grown-ass women.

Everyone bold enough to identify as a women in this misogynistic culture needs to speak in declarative sentences rather than upticks that beg for permission. We need to stop playing along or picking our battles when micro- or macro-aggression appears. We need to call out BS as it happens in real time. Even if it means we seem like “man haters,” we need to stop apologizing for ourselves and stop trying to pretty up our righteous fury. And can we stop patting “good guys” on the back like they deserve a medal for achieving a baseline of decency in the face of profound human rights violations? I honestly expect any man I electively know to use their male privilege to fight misogyny and gender inequality at every turn. Life is short but the legacy we leave is long.

In other news, Mrs. Lincoln, Grace is really digging on the cooler weather. She’s all, mom, I like to snuggle in your knee pit! and, mom, isn’t it fun to play with jangly balls at 3 am? So cuddly I can hardly begrudge her transgressions, she’s keeping me company as I roast acorn squash, brussels sprouts, and pork loin tonight with concord grapes, thyme, and chopped apples. I also am opening a bottle of red from the Sierra Foothills that I’d been saving for a special occasion. Because, you know, Sunday blues, mean reds, permakittens, and patriarchy. NYC balance, y’all.

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy