In a Fog

I have a routine on Mondays and Wednesdays where I get up early and meet my running buddies down on he Mall, then shower at the gym before heading to work. Normally this is a pretty foolproof series of events.

This morning, however, it wasn’t until I was too far into the routine to backtrack that I realized I’d left both my jacket and my bag full of clothes for this evening’s spinning class at home. (We’ll blame it on a poor night’s sleep.)

So it was after feeling like I was figuratively in a fog that I ended up literally in one, driving up the GW Parkway to my office. And it was such a beautiful and peaceful scene that I ended up pulling off to an overlook to admire the moment, and just stop and exhale.


I know it slows down traffic and can make the drive dangerous, but there’s something about fog and how it clings and clutches to everything that I find inviting. Those driving to their Thanksgiving destinations today might not appreciate the weather, but I do. It’s a beautiful morning and it helped set me back on track.

Awesome Autumn

So, so glad that autum is really here now. (I’m not quite as zen as Earl in this strip. I’ll admit to having a favorite season.) I had to skip my plans for making more butternut squash chutney on Saturday, but that just means I’ll tackle it this upcoming weekend instead. Cannot wait.

The Word of the Week is Sluggish

All around seems to be sluggish, this week. My home computer has been slowly dying, but this week it’s been much worse than normal. Fortunately I saw a good deal on a computer last week and bit the bullet, and I think it might be showing up tomorrow.

So now I’m making a fresh copy of all my documents, pictures, and music (they were all backed up but this is up-to-the-minute) and it’s been quietly doing its business for the past hour or so. Because it’s so temperamental, I’m using my travel netbook to write this, and that means nine zillion updates are running on it while I type. It feels like everything is moving in slow motion or underwater, which is not helped by finally watching the documentary Eleven Minutes, which is just so-so and not as riveting/interesting as I’d hoped.

But in general this week I’ve been feeling wiped out and bleah. I’m hoping it’s not me coming down with a bug. But I’m going to go to bed early and see if that helps. It’s frustrating because this weather right now is probably some of the best “go for a run” conditions all year and I’m just sitting here and thinking, “ugh.”

Of course, once the new computer shows up it’ll be “reinstall everything” and that will be a joy and a half. (Oh wait, no it won’t.) It’ll be nice once it’s done, but that’s going to take some time and then some.

Pot Roast (morning)I am going to break out the crock pot tomorrow though. Trying out a curry recipe that includes some pumpkin. It sounds like it will be delicious. I’ll chop up the potatoes and carrots and onions tonight, then tackle the chicken tomorrow and add in the sauce and spices and turn it on before I head out for the day. That’s the best thing about the autumn, the crock pot weather. I love soups and stews and one-pot dishes that make your entire house smell fantastic. The best. The absolute best.

Maybe this weekend I can take a few photos about autumn awesomeness? That’d be nice.

Drive-By Blog Update

Been awfully busy lately, and that means the blog is the first thing to not get updated. I then tell myself, “I’ll have to update my website with all of the interesting things I’ve been doing.” Except, of course, it’s not terribly interesting, really. But a few things of note as of late…

Worst Open House Ever?

Probably not. But Charlie and I did look at some open houses over the weekend (not that we’re buying in the near future, but to get an idea of right now what is available in our suspected price range) and there was one house that stood out in particular for being unwelcoming. First, when we got there, the front door was locked. As we were standing right next to the front window (with the realtor slumped on a couch), he saw us trying to open the door and hopped up and opened the door. “I don’t know how that happened,” he said. Because of course the door locked its own deadbolt.

But then, we stepped in and were greeted with an overwhelming smell of cigarette smoke. As we gasped for air, then realtor dealt the final blow. “When I got here for the open house I found out that one of the contractors working on the house is not feeling well and he’s lying down in the master bedroom, so I’m going to have to ask that you not go in there.”

“We’ll just come back,” Charlie said, as he and I scrambled towards the door. Which of course, meant, never. Talk about three strikes and you’re out…

Small Press Expo 2010 A Success

This year’s Small Press Expo (a show I first attended in 1995, first volunteered for in 1997, and have helped run in some capacity since 1998) was a huge success, hurrah! It was also my last year as the grand poobah of the Ignatz Awards, so having that off my shoulders (more or less) was also a big relief. I finished up my wine sketchbook, which I started back in 2001. I am determined to buckle down and scan the rest and start posting those sketches here… soon… honest.

Autumn = Soup Weather

I love making soup in colder weather, both on the stove and in my crock pot. I also finally decided to give Soupergirl a try, a local chef who sells her homemade soups that you order in advance. I’m going to keep making my own soup, of course, but I’m dying to see how hers taste too. Especially since hers is a zucchini pear soup, something that sounds strange at first and then intriguing, and more importantly I’d never have thought to try it on my own.

Upcoming Documentary I Can’t Wait To See

Waiting for “Superman” is opening this weekend in the DC area, David Guggenheim’s new documentary on the public school system in the United States and its decline over recent years. Part of the focus is on the DC school system and DC Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee, and I’m looking forward to seeing it for myself. For the record, while I don’t think she was perfect (and made some mistakes along the way), I do think that Rhee was one of the best things to happen to DC public schools in the past few years.

Hurrah for Autumn!

Brighton RockI went running this morning and it was cool enough that I had to wear a long-sleeved shirt, no more than 55 degrees at the most. And when I finished, all I could think was, “It’s autumn! Finally!” Saturday had been warm and humid, the antithesis of autumn in my head. But the temperature dropped a bit on Sunday, and for the past two days we’ve been back to me wearing a jacket in the morning on the way to work, although a stroll to the post office in the afternoon is just warm enough to go without.

Have I mentioned before how much I love autumn? To me it’s a cup of green tea when I get to work, or some apple cider in the afternoon and early evening. It’s the return of squash to the farmer’s market and grocery store, of taking a warm shower after a morning run instead of a cold one, of digging back out my long-sleeved shirts from where they’ve sat in my closet for five months.

When I got back from my run this morning, I opened up all the windows in my home (I’d already turned off the air yesterday), which was a delight to do so. I do wish that I could leave open the windows on the east side of the apartment, but unfortunately that would invite people to climb in and take my things, so no thanks. I can leave the west side windows open, but the breeze doesn’t really come through those so much. Still, as soon as I get home I’ll open them back up.

It’s funny, yesterday I was feeling frustrated by the lack of getting things really done at home. Today, I don’t know why, but it feels like a corner’s been turned in my head. Maybe I just needed the seasons to actually start progressing so I could do the same?

Autumn Has Arrived

The definitive moment for me, these past few years, is when I’ve come back from an early morning run and instead of a cool shower, I want a hot one. Yep, the temperature seems to have finally done the big drop; skipping past September and October weather entirely and plunging into late November.

Of course, the other big definitive moment for me is going to the farmer’s market in Arlington Courthouse and seeing how everything is turned over. Now instead of the big items being asparagus and tomatoes and corn, we’re seeing a plethora winter squash, apples, potatoes, cider… definitely a different sort of pickings available, but all still looking delicious.

Winter Squash

In the latest shocking news, operation “get rid of stuff” is going pretty well. Two bags of books went to the library this morning, and two more bags will get evaluated by the local comic store to see if there’s anything they want/need before I either sell off and/or donate the rest. Next up, those two paper ream boxes in the corner of the living room that have review materials that I am clearly never, ever, ever going to get to.

Before then, though, it’s time for another glass of apple cider (so, so good) and maybe fry up one of the little eggplants that I picked up at the farmer’s market. Or alternately the maytag blue cheese and potato tart. Decisions, decisions.