Friday, March 29, 2002

blind photographer

bike and swallows image by evgen bavcar

-----Original Message-----
From: Stephan
Sent: Friday, March 29, 2002 12:38 PM
To: Marya
Subject: Blind photographer


I found this and thought of you (I know you're fond of distractions).

It's about blind photographer Evgen Bavcar. Here's a quote from him:

"Every photo I take I have to have perfectly organized in my head before shooting. I put the camera at the height of my mouth and that's how I photograph people I hear talking. The autofocus helps, but I can manage without it. It's simple. I measure the distance with my hands and the rest is done by my internal desire for images. I know there are always things that escape me, but that's true of photographers who can physically see. My images are fragile; I've never seen them, but I know they exist, and some of them have touched me deeply."


stephs with bonsai
[ stephs with bonsai ]

Thursday, March 28, 2002


chester: shut up! i do not want to hear the copacabana song anymore!
jaxon: what was that? copacabana encore?

Shani is the office dog.
john: if shani had been an indian they woulda called her Licks Her Paw.
jaxon: or Begs for Food.
Can't make it, but it is sure to be fun... despite rock throwing (?). Mimosa's are culled from the freshly picked oranges offa Dan's tree in the front lawn. Music is guaranteed to be Beau Jocques, The Gourds, and Cake (cuz I know Dan). So come out and lend a hand. ;)

From: Dan
Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2002 22:56:07 -0800
To: Establishment
Subject: [Estab] 3rd time is the charm

Wednesday, March 27, 2002

and for this religious season...

TAOISM: Shit happens
CONFUSIANISM: Confucius say: "Shit happens."
BUDDHISM: If shit happens, it is not really shit.
ZEN-BUDDHISM: What is the sound of shit happening?
HINDUISM: This shit happened before.
ISLAM: If shit happens, it is the will of Allah.
PROTESTANTISM: Let shit happen to someone else.
CATHOLICISM: If shit happens, you deserve it.
JUDAISM: Why does shit always happen to me?

Tuesday, March 26, 2002

boy crooners

my former housemates moved up to portland where they make music. says one reviewer,

"Fully expect to faint at this show, especially if you are the kind of person who thinks acoustic singer-songwriters all sound the same. Not only are all these boy-crooners the absolute dreamiest when it comes to honesty and sensitivity, but their voices and styles are distinct."

little wings || bobbie birdman || m. ward


pledging for lurve

i tell ya. public radio, god love it! brings you the best news, the most diversified music (after you weed through all the jazz and classical, that is), "this american life," "fresh air," and marraige proposals. they shoulda ran this story earlier, as the pledge drive just ended. ;)
while perusing the good captain's site, i got offroaded into i don't know who he is. however, he had an article about what it would be like with ayn rand as your mother. (shivering yet?)

and for the rest of you, i just love carolyn hax. she's an advice columnist for the washington post. i want to be her. or at least have her job. i usually read her in the l.a. times (best newspaper), but you can read her column on line. i think she is my new best friend. i'll tell her if i ever get to meet her.


jaxon: and last but not least, turtles can breathe through their butts
marya: gives a whole new meaning to brown nose, doesn't it?

Monday, March 25, 2002


welp. that damned copacabana song has been in my head now for over two weeks. it permeates my work day. and finds it way wrapping around the different people i work closely with. case in point....

marya (singing): my name is jaxon
jaxon (speaking): i am a show girl

marya: look jaxon you're on my web site.
jaxon: you're a mean one mr. grinch.

Sunday, March 24, 2002


by David Wagoner

Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you,
If you leave it you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

Saturday, March 23, 2002

More than 30 days hath too much

do you ever just get tired of the month? say, around the 23rd? just feeling apathetic or kinda bored and restless and basically ready for a new month?

i tell you, months stick around too long. wear out their welcome. which is why i admire february and find september and november refreshing, sandwiched between year-hogs august, october, and december.

and twice we get the 31-days-in-a-row: july/aug and then dec/jan. but i let december slide a little because of the holidays and the anticipation of the New Year.

and march. what about march. march is long and wet and windy and oftentimes dreary. and half the time -- more than half-the-time -- there isn't even a stinking holiday to break things up. unless you call st. patrick's day a holiday, but that's really just a scam to get us all to drink so that we forget that there's still another 15 days before we get something new to look at in our calendars.

my idea of a good year would entail more, but lighter, months. kinda like lifting weights to develop long, lean muscles: i'd rather go for more reps and sets than the power lift. more months, less weight in days.

on the other hand, i prefer the odd number over the even number, which means that 30-day months always seem a little wishy-washy to me. there's no middle ground. no pinnacle. no apex, no mid-month comma.

i'm also a little weird about luck and days. for instance, a new month that begins on a monday is terribly lucky. it's a good omen. a nice, clean, fresh start.

but, 23 days down the road that fresh start is looking a little tired and worn out and all i want to do is have another one. albeit a shorter, quicker one. or maybe i just need a cheering section, a last supporting push to make it through the last seven days. instead i'm just getting ready for april with its neat-and-tidy monday start, and its brief 30 days, signaling longer days and sandals and hikes after work and the beginning of the new season.

the fab lazy day

what a great day!

first of all, shane and dan drank way too much last night which made them super squishy and not really interested in doing anything other than being horizontal and watching movies. as it was rainy and chilly and drizzly, it made for a perfect lazypolooza. we watched forrest gump, a dvd-remnant from a video frenzy held by friends the night before. and okay it is a corny movie, but i think it holds up over time. i hadn't seen it in years and got a little teary in multiple parts.

i think forrest's blessing is the absence of neurosis and the presense of focus. he is 100% in the moment. he cares for other people. he doesn't take on their baggage. he doesn't have any fear. he focuses on his goal. i think he is a type of boddhisattva or something. or maybe just an idiot savant where his gift is luck. ;) or adventure.

then erin and shawn tuttle mosied over. we just lounged, legs drooping over the arms of couches and armchairs, glasses of water and cups of coffee, handfuls of cashews, and an abundance of belly laughs. it was perfect.

meanwhile, throughout the morning, people would stop by wondering about the status of dan's "paint my house" party (more about that in a later entry). so we had jonnie b., and jamil, and mark g. all wandering about mid-morning. mark held our attention with the news of bill roalman's passing. bill was an active and respected city councilman who was truly for the people. he was single-handedly the best bike advocate our town has ever seen -- and that is saying a lot, as slo is incredibly bike-friendly and active.

there will be a memorial for bill this wednesday at 3pm at the mission. gizmo's asking everyone to ride their bikes there and then we will do a commemorative loop or two around the downtown area afterwards. a bike procession to honor slo's best bike guy.

interesting last name: roll-man (bike), bill-role-man (councilman). perfect if he were a fictional protagonist. fitting for real life.

and speaking of the mission, i played the At the Mission song for MarkG, ErinT, and ShawnT. fun. ;)

that open mic has opened up a whole new ball of stage fright worms that i never knew i had. i got nervous this morning and that used to never happen. ;)

after all the lounging and lazing we rallied for a downtown moroccan midday meal. seven of us in a billowy-ceiling, fabric-walled, lights-turned-down room. excellent green-tea-plus-mint-plus-sugar tea. yyumm. then a mosey down the road to linnaea's for buttcake, i mean bundt cake and "dragon phoenix pearl" green tea (so delicous *and* cute).

finally, there was jewelry bought and i've got me a new silver bracelet and flipfloppy thongs.

and the final finally, a little S&TC before we decide what to do with ourselves tonight.

perfect saturday. ;)

the only bummer was missing kristin's calls and not having her there to share the belly laughs and morrocan goodness. next time. definitely.


overheard at the 'stab

saturday morning, coffee sippin', wakin' up chit chat.

about the crazy girl shane took to Gigi's for appetizers last night.

reb: she's not the type of girl you wanna take home to meet your mama.
shane: she's not the type of girl you want to take to GiGi's for appetizers.

Thursday, March 21, 2002

Wild Geese

by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

our bathrooms have names

the downstairs bathroom closest to the kitchen has long been called
"Madonna." It is named after the infamous Madonna Inn men's bathroom. There,
the urinal is a waterfall that streams over rocks from Cerro San Luis (the
peak that Madonna Inn is built into -- the actual rock acts as walls in many
parts of the hotel). Our Madonna had rocks that lined the shower. Yeah,
someone probably peed in it, too.

One of the upstairs bathrooms is known as The Batman Bathroom. It is larger
than at least one of the bedrooms. Shoot, you could have a small dance party
in it. The window, which is open with breezy curtains almost all year long,
has a view of a beautiful park-punctuation of a magnolia tree. About twelve
years ago, in one of its many Makeovers, a former roommate (Ducky) painted
the shower complete with a big batman-in-the-sky logo.

The other upstairs bathroom is called Broomcloset because it is the exact
opposite of Batman: it is dinky. Tiny. Narrow. And when the landlords first
installed low-flow toilets (which are practically standard issue in
california), it was constantly backed up, backing up, beginning to back up,
or considering a future backup. Often un-usable it was also rumored to
enunciate fowl vocal messages a la the exorcist. So for a long time this
toilet was also known as Satan's Toilet, The Black Hole, and Don't Go In

The last bathroom, and this one is downstairs near my room, is called the
Donatello, for no other reason than the manager-at-that-time's nephew was
seriously into the Ninja Turtles.

Times change, though, as do Bathroom milieux. Facelifts abounded. The sewer
lines have been completely overhauled (no more tree roots). And the rock
wall of Madonna is long gone. And so a vote was cast on Tuesday and we are
renaming the bathrooms. We are doing this by silent brainstorm (put your
name suggestion on ballot form). And then we will decide by notsoprivate
debating and campaigning and cajoling and namecalling.

I'm looking at my ballot right now.

Current interiors:

Donatello was the first to have serious overhaul. The landlord musta been
yearning for summer: the colors are bright yellow accented with different,
tho not quite complimentary, bright yellow. Curtain is striped multi bright
yellow. We went in wearing shades. In retaliation, we began to gather
Simpson's dolls. We're only missing Lisa. The are suspended on the wall over
the toilet. They hold hands. My money's on calling this one "Springfield."

Madonna was second for the overhaul. The landlord's brother's girlfriend
painted this one. It is shades of pepto-bismo pink and hospital robin's egg
blue. Moddled-spongy paint on the walls. I am not kidding. This has been
referred to so far as "Intestines", and "Barf." I don't mind it as much as
some others. It is also home to my goose, which I have a feeling is now the
House Goose -- a real-sized goose that is a lamp. ;) This goose is dressed
up for all of our halloween parties and said costume usually lasts for many
months. Goose has been bondage s&m goose, space goose, country goose, and
voodoo priestess goose. I vote for goose-themed name over internal organ

The Batman now looks like a decent-Martha-Stewart attempt at faux french
countryside. It is earthy and colorful and very clean and fancy-tiled and
everyone loves it but i must admit that it looks a bit out-of-sync compared
to the swapmeet-meets-funky-granola theme that makes up most of the rest of
the house. I have no preference for names here.

And Broom Closet hasn't changed at all except that it no longer backs up.
Ever. It has been exorcised.

And that my friends has been the Establishment Bathroom report. We will
provide live coverage during the voting process.

staff reporter

Friday, March 15, 2002

overheards, numbah four

Jaxon: what, did anne heche not come over last night?
Marya: dude, she is married with child
JimK: what? she's married to Charo?

overheards, part trois

(yes i know i should be working)
(but it's friday)
(hence the subject of our next overheard)

kristin: it's friday
marya: i love friday
marya: the only way friday could be better --
bret: is if they were saturday?
marya: no, if we had three day weekends that started on friday
kristin: as long as you didn't have to worry about the things you need to do the next week
marya: i really need to teach you my denial survival skills

overheards, part deux

marya: jaxon, my new goal is to be a singer in sweet honey in the rock. the only problem is that i need to be black.
jaxon: that shouldn't be any problem for you. you've been pretending to be mexican for a really long time.

overheards: 3/15/02

chester came in today, after a week off with a new baby.
marya (about the baby): he's a little pisces!
chester: a little peices?
marya: feces!
chester: yes he's a little shit

marya calls rem:
marya: how do you spell feces?
rem: feces?
marya: feces.
rem: i dunno. i'd have to spell it out
marya: is it f-e-c-e-s?
rem: i dunno. i can't spell in the air. my siblings used to do that when i was little so i wouldn't know what they were saying.

Thursday, March 14, 2002

tonight i'm going to see sweet honey in the rock with my mom and my sister. basically i am politely forcing my sister to go. basically she is politely going just to please me. but i think she will be really stoked afterwards.

sweet honey has a cd called breaths which is one of my all-time favorites, and by that i mean, it's in my top five (my top five which consists of a continuum from 1 to 5) favorite albums/cds of all time. spiritual singalong. political belt out. heartwarming and soulsoothing. and i'm going to see them tonight.


marya: did you think it was funny?
jaxon: i liked it.
marya: but did you think it was funny?
jaxon: it was better than funny.

jaxy listened to my clara bones song. i take that as a compliment. ;)

open mic, part II

well okay. did my first open mic. wow -- so many physical reactions i wasn't prepared for and they are:

    constricted throat. where did my voice go?
    shaky leg -- my knee could not stop bouncing my leg
    i was just not in my body
    i had to start the first song over

but i got through it and everyone clapped and cheered. and i made my goal of open mic by april1. so, despite not performing like i wish i had, i view it as a complete success.

i figure i'll just go back over and over and over.

side note: v. cute boys at open mic. one who's name is Y.Y. is tall black and lanky with dreads almost to his ass. he just got back from a silent month-long vipashyana retreat in washington. so he talked my ear off about that (and commented on the irony). also chris, who sat next to me and was so physically "my type" i was laughing at myself.

Wednesday, March 13, 2002

did i mention that i love robbie robertson?

que agua

side note: yesterday on the wall of a chiro's office i read you should drink one quart of water for each 50 pounds you weigh and an extra quart for digestion and elimination.
now i'm thinking, if you are overweight that is a whole lot of water to be drinking and you could be drinking all day.

can that be right?
i love robbie robertson. bret just handed me music from big pink by the band. despite having a few rr cds i've never gotten into the band. so today i'm listening.

Tuesday, March 12, 2002

band camp

tonight my friends invited me to come to their band practice. they've got
the real deal -- in a recording studio (they just have a room -- they don't
have the killer recording setup or anything), great accoustics, play as loud
as you can. they've played together for years.

we played four of my five songs. my brain cramped towards the end and i
couldn't remember the chords, words, or melody to the fifth. ha.

it was amazing to hear the drums, bass and lead guitar on a song that you
wrote. and the guys are good so they made it sound extra sweet. it's a real
loping sweet almost 50s type of song.

we also played the ballad of clara bones which is a bum-diddydiddydiddy-bum
song. very cowboy-dirt road type of song.

but the best part was getting comfortable with the mic and learning to get
close enough that my lips brushed it and just really singing. i took the
advice about holding back to heart and so i'm working on that for tomorrow's
open mic. ;)

i think that is one of the all time most fun things i've ever done. i
totally understand why people have bands. so much more fun that way.

okay. will stop i could go on and on...

Thursday, March 07, 2002

open mic, part I

i went to open mic night last night. not to play, but to support my housemates. only one of them ended up playing, and he was pretty nervous and his voice gave out on him a little. but it was the first step and a great performance of stepping up to the plate --- which is always the perfect piece to start out with.

i live in a small town and "open mic" could be semi-corny, with a meager audience and meager talent.

but this wasn't like that.

the cafe was packed -- crammed packed full. we had to sit on the floor. there were musicians (singer/songwriters, guitarists), poets, a magician, and comedian, and even a heckler (i don't think the heckler was actually signed up to perform).

and the overall the performances were really good. people practicing, people doing something brand new they had learned that day, people doing works they had honed and honed and honed. someone was even selling cds after their ten minutes were up (and i think she sold them all).

my goal: joining their ranks by april first. that gives me three weeks.

and i want my housemate to go back again and again and again to beat the nervousness and to get better and better and better.

it made me wish carrie wasn't leaving. i would love to have sung or have done a reading or something with her. maybe when she gets back.

Tuesday, March 05, 2002

overheard at w.a.

Carrie: It was probably Rem's leg.
Rem: What?
Marya: Nothing.
Rem: What? The smell? The noise?

Monday, March 04, 2002

lunch at the 'stab

there was a congregation at lunchtime. we don't always sync up like this, but today found me, shane and dan sitting around La Familia table eating our mid-day meal.

"dan," shane said, "who do you like better, me or marya?"

dan shoveled a big bite of burrito into his mouth and mumbled nothing very loudly and incoherantly. shane was undeterred and turned to me.

"mar," shane said, "who do you like better, me or dan?"

"you are a trouble maker," said i.

"that's what the c is for," said dan referring to shane-c.

"chroublemaker," i said.
this cat barks. it is truly bizarre. he doesn't do it all the time, only when he is really demanding. he's doing it right now. he wants up on my lap. i wish i could record this so you could hear the barking cat. ;)

Sunday, March 03, 2002

dan is filling the house up with sage. not that he is the sage-burning type of guy. he is just more of a curious cat and he found this in the free pile. I bold this to remind myself to create a glossary of terms, later.

let me back up and start from the beginning.

i'm marya and i've been keeping an online journal for a few years now, but hard coding it because i dunno why. i liked being able to create new pages fresh every day.

i live in a housing co-op, the old kind, verging-on-commune-kind in a semi-conservative area of the central coast of california. i've lived here for nine years and am contemplating a move, but it's hard to contemplate because as much as i want my own refrigerator and bathroom (not refrigerator in bathroom), i love having this environment.

this environment is kind of like having your neighborhood's funky cafe in your livingroom, but having your living room be more like a mini ski-lodge, but not the plush kind of ski lodge, more like the funky neighborhood cafe sort.

more on the house later. that might warrent it's own post.

last week i was on a male-folkierama music fest punctuated by ryan adams, david gray and mason jennings. i thought i had turned a page. ;)

but today i just returned with three female world-beatish electronicish flimflamathon: si*se (self-titled), zap mama (7), and miriam makeba (homeland).

also, since this is a brand-new blog (and i reserve the right to remove this later), i might as well get this outta the way. i'm a buddhist. a baby buddhist, which means i'm still on my hinayana path. i'll probably bring some things up now and again (or every damn day). maybe. anyhow, today i read Tonglen: The Path of Tranformation by Pema Chodron. I wandered around the streets of downtown doing a new practice i just learned about, where for about two blocks you open yourself to every person you see on the sidewalk -- no not in a big display of idiotic stranger-scariness -- c'mon folks gimme more credit. You just think to yourself as you pass people on the sidewalk "may you be happy." it was a good exercise. i'll write about it more later.

peace lovies, m.