Saturday, April 21, 2012


It's spring and that means it's time to get Pete, my big black pussycat, shaved for the summer.

He's a rescue and of indeterminate breed, but he's got a ton of hair and despite best attempts to groom him every day - oh the drama when he spies the Furminator - beginning each April there is a frosting of black hair all over my house.  That which doesn't shed off him stays behind to make lots of mats.

He's like a husky, feline Bob Marley with tiny dreadlocks and anxiety issues.

Yesterday he went in to The Best Little Cat House to get his annual Go-Go Lion Cut,and when he got home I noticed that they had given him a little Mad Men tie.

 Which is appropriate because he got really mad when I started laughing at him.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Moving On

The small business that I have been working for the last 6 years is closing and I will be moving on.

This is simultaneously producing feelings of anxiety and anticipatory excitement.


I'm terrified to be out there looking for work in an economy that is less than robust and where I am competing with people who are much younger.  There is an age bias in our culture and although I don't look old, I am older and I know it matters.

There's also excitement because I would love be in a position where I'm not stressing about cash flow and wondering how we're going to make payroll, or where the money is going to come from to pay the huge insurance bills.  The cost of doing business began to consume every bit of profit.

At some point you have to draw the line in the sand and say - "enough" - because it gets to a place where you're not only not making money, you're paying to not make a profit. 

So as I'm closing the business which is exhausting and trying and sad, I'm also beginning the search for new work.  I love beginnings of anything because you can bring all of your ideals and perfect visions and focus on the qualities that you really want to experience.

My issue is that at the same time I'm consumed with the fear that I will end up with a shopping cart like so many people I see every day down in Santa Monica.  People my age or a bit older who are not raving mad and talking to themselves, but who are clean and healthy and who probably were living indoors a year or two ago.

Friends have been out of work for more than 2 years.  When I listen to the news and they report jobs numbers it doesn't sound very encouraging.  When I look at what's available in the want ads it feels like I would be stepping right back into the kind of mind numbing work that contributed to the depression I have just slipped off.

Moving on is something I'm looking forward to - I enjoy change and I'm making a list of all of the things I'd love to get paid to do at work, like read, write, work with others on a project that we all contribute to and make fantastic and while we're at it the project will bring great value to the world.... or at least make people laugh.

Already I've learned to ask for help and to say out loud all those things that scare me about an unknown future.  I'm learning to embrace change, although sometimes it feels more like getting mugged by change. It's all happening and it's going to happen whether I want it or not.

Might as well focus on creating everything I want instead of fighting to keep everything that I've been complaining about for the last two years.

Moving on can be bitter sweet, but mostly it's a good thing.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

PASSOVER...and over and over and over

This year I did not get to go to a Passover dinner, something I have done almost every year since I was a kid because all of my best friends were Jewish and then I seemed to have developed a penchant for Jewish men.

Passover is one of the big celebrations akin to Easter without the necromancy, ham and chocolate bunnies.

It's a celebration of the freeing of the Jews who were enslaved by the Egyptians.  God got really angry with the Egyptians and punished them with plagues.

Here are some fun things to do with your kids for Passover:
  1. Nile waters turning to blood –put red food coloring in the water glasses at the dinner table, in the bathroom sinks, in the dog’s water bowl, and anywhere else you can think of.
  2. The frogs–Use green construction paper to cut out roundish frogs with thin green legs. Bend the legs to make the frogs look as if they are jumping. Put them everywhere, in cereal boxes, in the shower, refrigerator, drawers, etc.
  3. The lice–Use a hole punch to make many small white “dots” out of plain white paper. Scotch tape them on your body and leave them on for a few hours. The appearance and irritation will make you think of itching lice.
  4. The flies– Use clear scotch tape to tape pepper or small “dots” of black construction paper in different areas of the house, the windows, the bathroom mirrors, etc.
  5. Disease afflicting the Egyptian livestock--put stuffed animals in different areas of the house, upside down.
  6. Boils–Use a hole punch to make many small red “dots” out of red construction paper (or cut out circles). Cover each other with boils by scotch taping them on your body and leave them on for a few hours. The appearance and irritation will make you think of the boils.
  7. Hailstorm–Put ice cubes around the outside of your house, the porch areas and on the outside window sills.
  8. Locusts– Use brown construction paper to cut out oval-looking locusts. Put them everywhere as you did the frogs (you’ll even think of some new places to surprise your family).
  9. Darkness–Tape brown paper bags over all the windows, draw all draperies to keep it dark in the daytime, or don’t turn on any lights in the evening.
  10. Death –Put red ribbon on the sides and top of door post of your house to avoid the death plague. When the neighbors ask what the ribbon is for you can witness to them!
It's a long night's celebration - as I write this my neighbors are going on three hours of singing - and although I missed being with my friends this year I'm kind of happy to just celebrate the beginning of spring.

Happy Passover!
Happy Easter!
Happy Spring!