Vegans Need Not Apply

My personal ad, posted October 4, 2019

My grandmother Alice was an exceptional woman. Though she received very little formal education she was an autodidact par excellence and well-versed on topics ranging from train engineering to transcendentalism. But what I loved most about her was her great equanimity. Though she lived most of her life in an especially intolerant corner of Massachusetts and died in the Reagan 1980s, she was brilliantly open-hearted when it came to matters of race, sexuality, religion, gender, class. Her only true bias was against Presbytarians, whom, for whatever reason, she found ridiculous. When I’d ask about that, she’d shrug. “Everyone has a bias,” she’d say, “and that’s mine.” Well, I’ll be super super honest. When it come to dating, my only true bias is against vegans. As far as I’m concerned, a romantic connection that works on many levels is so rare that it’s ridiculous to rule anyone out on the basis of gender or age (within the realm of decency) or race or class or physical type.* But I will never date a vegan again. Life is too short to maw impossible burgers when there’s sirloin to be had.
*I have my preferences, but that’s for a different post.

The Blue, Blue Bridge of Twelve Novembers

blue tears, white hat

I carry so much loneliness that sometimes I forget this is not how everyone moves through this thing called life.

I carry so much loneliness that sometimes I forget it’s there at all.

Then something comes along to amplify that loneliness–to sharpen it so acutely that it stops my breath and squeezes my heart–and I simply can’t bear it by myself.

That’s how this last month has felt. First because I was in so much immobilizing pain that it prevented me from doing many things myself.

And so I reached out to people I assumed were cross with me only to discover I’d read their momentary frustration as something far more damming. I reached out to people with whom I’d been out of touch for years only to discover a great sympatico between us still. I reached out to people I hadn’t known well until my need, primal and pure, deepened our connection. And I reached out to people whose hearts I steadily hold but had kept afar while I malingered on this bridge called my book.

Thus warmth flowed and it helped.

And then I opened a channel with a woman I’d admired online for months—a woman beautiful and butch and kind-hearted and quick-witted. And, lucky me, warmth flowed from her too and we found ourselves moving from friendship to something far more molten and engulfing.

And that helped a lot. Continue Reading →

The Church of Aretha and Apple Music

I wake, tears slipping down my face because of yesterday’s disappointment, love lost before it could be found. But also: spinal discs slipping back into place, master healers having manipulated muscle and tissue as I submitted to magic sleep.

I feel better and worse–the human condition, don’t you know.

My heart aches: The sadness of not being held by someone I’d hoped could handle my rawest and shiniest states. Fear about my health and ragged humanity, all our future. Rage about ego, all that ego, run amok. Grace gone when we get afraid.

My heart soars: Hope and her sweet and sundry ways. Coffee, blue divan, the sun’s glorious ascent from my small city window. I turn on music and let the shuffle gods sermonize as I take their holy-holy communion. Continue Reading →

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