Random ThoughtsApril 16th, 2009
by Suzanne Burns
I have been off-line lately. My computer crashed about a month ago. It was sudden. I was printing out something of great importance, like a new recipe for tiramisu or the lyrics for the Prince song “Kiss,” when up popped what my computer genius friend refers to as “the blue screen of death.” Not a little peeplet from the damn machine since.
So now I am on an unfamiliar notebook. I feel like I’m cheating. I am tirelessly trying to figure out the in’s and out’s to Word 2007. Let’s just say the person who designed Word 2007 never wrote poems. No single spacing without a process of formatting and reformatting. What would Emily Dickinson think?
Some exciting things happened in the month of March, including my new poetry chapbook, Vacancy, debuted from Pudding House Press. This means a long push of promoting the chapbook. (If you ever want to know who your true friends are, try inviting them to a poetry reading. Seriously…) I am torn between genres again. Poetry and Fiction, Fiction and Poetry. It’s like Sophie’s Choice. Do I read Poets and Writers or my stack of backlogged New Yorker’s? Or settle for something in between, like my weekly dose of The National Enquirer and Star tabloids?
My April goal is to finish my new poetry manuscript, a hopeful tour de force of poems revolving around the week I spent in Paris last October. (I’ve always wanted to refer to myself as a tour de force.) April is National Poetry Month, but as soon as I get immersed in the new poems, I feel my unfinished novel calling me. The writer’s lament.
Two things really pissed me off this month.
Obama’s comment about the Special Olympics really boiled me. And I love him. I cried when he got elected. I mean, the love is true and deep. So the disappointment is massive. My nephew is a special needs kid. It hurt me. It really did.
My husband continues to struggle for hours at his plumbing job. I think he worked a total of four days in March. We’ve spent the remaining time together doing things like haunting the public library, making wood and art projects, watching impressively large doses of “reality” TV (The Celebrity Apprentice, Sober House, Top Chef, Chopping Block, Hell’s Kitchen, Celebrity Rehab, American Idol) and visiting our town’s various happy hours. (Without gaining a pound of extra weight, I might add.)
These forays into our town’s happy hours have produced the culinary wonderment of $3 cheeseburgers (they seemed like real meat), tater tots, salads, chips and queso, mini pizzas, potato skins and artichoke soup.
After travelling to Portland to see a poetry slam we discovered the best happy hour deal of all time in Hood River. The dollar menu!!! One dollar for a tropical pork tostada. One dollar for salmon cakes. One dollar for Buffalo chicken strips, four of them. We’re talking twenty-five cents apiece here.
All very cheap and abundant…but where are the happy hour desserts? I guarantee the happy hour experience would take on new culinary reverence with a tiny little two-dollar crème brulee at the end of the meal.
Food for thought?