Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Tuesday Slice: The germs catch up

The alarm goes off
The chores get done
The lessons get planned
The emails get sent


The car gets gas
The groceries get bought
The toilet gets cleaned
The package gets mailed


The alarm gets set
The students get taught
The meetings get met
The phone calls get answered


The dinner gets cooked
The carpet gets vacuumed
The clothes get washed
The texts get sent


The weekend gets here
The break gets here
The alarm goes off
The germs catch up.

Sleep.  Medicate.  Sleep some more.

The alarm goes off
The chores get done....

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Tuesday Slice: Our own Charlotte

Last night:  I'm worried as soon as I step into the kitchen.  I see a leaf whipping madly about in the cold, blustery wind outside the window above the sink.  It's stuck to Charlotte's web...but where is Charlotte?  Turning off all the lights to cut the glare, I can see that she's not in sight.  I'm hoping she's tucked under the eaves; I've just warmed up, and not about to go out with a flashlight to check.

Charlotte appeared in our back window in early October.  I first noticed her at oh-dark-thirty in the morning as I shuffled to my coffeemaker.  I looked up bleary-eyed and jumped, thinking I had just walked past a spider hanging from the kitchen ceiling, reflected in the window.  She was outside, hanging in the center of a web invisible in the dark.
Intrigued, I went to investigate in the light of day, but only found the web--and it was big, almost a foot-and-a-half across, attached to our eaves and patio furniture.  Further trips to the backyard uncovered Charlotte's daytime roost between the gutter and the eave.  At dusk, she would be back in view, often respinning the web she had carefully gathered up in the morning.  She kept to her nocturnal schedule for quite a few weeks until recently, when we saw her at all hours.  She didn't come out at all for the last three days, and I thought the worst, until she reappeared Sunday morning.  Her web was much smaller, but still just as detailed, strands less than a quarter inch apart.

But the weather is getting colder this week.  Charlotte made what looks like an egg case a couple of weeks ago, and I've learned that the lifespan of a tropical orb weaver is only about a year.  I'm thinking she isn't long for this world, so I treasure each sighting, knowing it may just be the last one.

Meanwhile, another new tenant is renting space in our backyard.  

This prickly-looking arachnid has taken up residence on our playscape.  The spiny orb weaver's web sports equally spaced dots on its sparse lines.    

A little late to be catching our summer mosquitoes...but I think I'll let her stay, too.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Tuesday Slice of Life: Coming out of the dark

I am a realistic optimist who likes scary books and movies...except when they hit too close to home.  Loved Stephen King's Pet Sematary (even though I shrieked at the ending and threw the book across the room), couldn't sleep for nights after watching "Poltergeist" in the 80s (there was a toy clown in my bedroom, and I come from a family of ghost-believers).  Love Poe-esque horror stories, could barely stomach Hunger Games (the social commentary on economic class and reality television seemed frighteningly prophetic).  I am the girl at the movies who will deliver a vise-like grip on the arm of the person next to me when the suspense becomes too much, then come home and quickly push aside the shower curtain in the bathroom to make sure no one is lurking there.

This meme appeared in my Facebook newsfeed a few weeks ago.  It reminded me of my reaction to scary movies and books, and seemed apropos for the news these days:  #metoo, hate crime shootings and bombings, voter suppression, and the midterm elections.
My husband and I have already cast our ballots.  The thought of watching mainstream television tonight, favorite shows interrupted by election result updates, is giving me the same upset stomach that Hunger Games delivered.  Rather than ride an emotional rollercoaster all evening, which would undoubtedly lead to a restless night--all due to something which is now beyond our control--we are considering leaving the television off, or maybe binge-watching an Amazon Prime show or two.  We will hold each other tight and drift off to sleep.  

The realist in me says that no matter what, we will persevere.  The optimist in me hopes the curtains will be thrown wide open, and the boogeymen will be seen for who they are, vanquished in the light of day.  I can wait for the morning for the ending to this scary movie.