Saturday, November 24, 2012

stooped stuff

My life is full of stooped stuff.

You may  have read that as stupid stuff.  It's a common error.  A mistake I make myself all the time.

It seems lately like I'm always bent down listening, biding my time, biting my tongue.  Allowing my days to be spent on minutiae.

Like last weekend when, instead of writing, instead of an important meeting, instead of participating in a humanitarian relief effort, Son and I went to an orchid show.  I kept asking myself, Why am I doing this? 

I don't really know. He likes orchids. I like him and orchids are pretty.

So we went.

I can't say we accomplished much worthwhile.

He had homework he should have done. 

It's not like he's fascinated with orchids in the same way he was with rocks or dinosaurs when he studied up all the Latin names and could sort them by types.  He doesn't really care what the names of the orchids are.

Neither do I.

Most of the orchid growers were sad-looking men with gray teeth.  All that time and money spent.

The flowers were exquisite.

Another thing Son and I did last weekend was hunt out purple cauliflower at the farmer's market.  It took us more than an hour.

But then we found it.

Along the way we also found romanesco broccoli. And some kind of exotic Romanian rutabaga. And fresh walnuts.

And almond brioche.  Especially almond brioche.  It was raining and so we tried to keep the brioche dry in its little paper bag and ran back to the car to eat it.

It was delicious.

So was the purple cauliflower.  I haven't cooked the fancy rutabaga yet.  I'll get to it.

Sometime.  When I'm not spending half an hour with my arms around an angry nine-year-old, sitting on the side of his bed:  "You're probably just trying to keep me from being with everyone else!"

"I am? That doesn't sound like me.  What might be some other reason I'm sitting here with you?"

"You want me to learn my lesson."

"Hmm.  I don't know what lesson you might be learning, do you?  Maybe.  But is there some other reason you can think of?"

"You want me to calm down."

"Mmm, yeah.  If I let you go out and try to hang out with them right now, would any of you have a good time?"

"You don't want me to have a fight with them."

"That sounds more like it.  I do really want you to have good experiences together. So do you want the covers on while you take a rest now?"

"Okay.  Will you wake me up before they paint the windows?"


All this stooped stuff.  All this time-thirsty standing still, bending down, walking around, looking at things, holding people on my lap, getting nothing really done.

Except what matters most.


Lisa B. said...

I love that conversation with your son. Love. And those gorgeous vegetables. I remember when I got my one and only broccoli romanesco and how smitten I was with it at the farmer's market. I think the farmer was maybe just a little reluctant to sell it. Well done you for spending your time in these ways. I say this, as I contemplate two swaths of writing time next weekend that I have vowed to protect against all assailants, including myself and my own frittery plans. I will try to be fierce and also to keep this post's perspective in mind.

leebee said...

It's lovely, but in light of our conversation, is it wise?

Emma J said...

Lisa B. - I hope you stood fierce against frittery of all kinds.

leebee - Is what wise? Stooping? Or calling it that?

leebee said...

[You're trying to draw me in, aren't you? :)]

"What matters most." Who gets to decide that?

Or is this just inside-out resentment at the little stuff frittering away your writing time?

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