fredag, august 25, 2006

Shaking Off the Dust

Everything is backwards, but only underfoot. I bought a white rug and white covers for the couch. I bought blue glass for tea candles. I rearranged pictures on the walls, returning, for example, Alice to her rightful place lording over the living room. I moved the European city photos out of the hallway and placed them above my black desk alongside the windows that look out on Western Avenue and the trees already taking autumn's colors.

The bookshelves have been dusted, the books straightened, the non-fitting books removed. The room is far less noisy now...visually speaking. (Visually speaking?)

A white couch, white rugs, white walls with colorful pieces put up, clean shelves with tea candles and color-arranged books. Maybe it was the gray weather that got me thinking about winter, but I've thought about winter. I am changing my space to accommodate it.

The reorganization was needed, sorely. I started with the vision of the white rug and white-covered couch. And now those elements are dusty from all the moving of furniture and unpacking and repacking of boxes, the way bare feet have picked up dust bunnies from the other neglected zones of the apartment. One by one I'm tackling each space, destroying them in order to fix them. But my carpets. My pristine (well, IKEA-cheap) carpets. It's so sad, really.

This is probably the source of Swedish ennui. It isn't the six-month winter; it's the way one's finally-clean home seems no longer clean seconds after one sits down, sighs, and looks hopefully at the achievement.

Is this the same angst Mediterranean men feel after shaving?

It's a wonder all home are not designed like the Black Maria.

I am suspicious of highly functional products that bill themselves as advances upon technologies none of us have called into question, campaigns that contend a ceaseless cycle of reinvention has delivered yet again and we are to greet the previous offerings with scorn. That offering a new variation on the product is not enough. (Then why do it?) That Schick and Victoria's Secret might suggest they outpace microprocessors.

Last night, sitting in the candle-lit, freshly cleaned and rearranged living room, with the black-eye dust marks of its sad white rug hidden in the shadows and The Bounty playing without notice on the television, I worked on a mix for next week's hot dish extravaganza. I was tweaking the mix for something like the 84th time, fine-tuning it to the point of (one hopes) being entirely forgettable background music, which I think is the only thing one should play at a party...unless of course it's a listening party, in which case guests have a responsibility for knowing about and feigning care for what's occurring.

A spider descended into view, dropping, it seems, from the ceiling fan towards the white light of my computer screen.

I shuddered and swatted fearfully at it, which caused it to sway, coming closer to me ultimately. (Damn this pendulum effect!) I swatted it downward now and hopped up, turned on the light, and stared at the floor. Nothing.

My heart rate was up. Nothing.

I got on my hands and knees and inspected each tiny piece of flotsam. Nubbles of fabric from clothes or the couch. Could this be pocket lint? A small, shiny half-shell of a lady bug.

I shuddered again. I felt bugs all over me. Every knot in my hair was a bug. Every itch and every stray thread that brushed my skin was a bug.

At the end of the early morning dream, just prior to awakening at 6:02, knowing it was 6:02, I had been put into a bet about god with someone whose face was indistinct. I had for years had dreams involving only faceless people (This is true, not part of the dream), dreams which scared me but which I loved, and which I'd lost when I started blogging. Suddenly the faces became distinct. I started dreaming of people I knew.

Then an indistinct face returned last night. We discussed god. We hatched some bet involving powers of god, though not omniscience or omnipotence. Those aren't interesting powers. We debated something like flight and telekinesis. I think I was on the flight side. I went home to plan my proof. My house lacked furniture but had many small rooms. Suddenly I realized a spider's strand had hooked my hand and I shook it but could not shake the spider. It hopped before me like a yo-yo. I was afraid, terribly.
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