Sunday, September 09, 2007

Making Up For Lost Time

"Are you still alive?" asked the email I received this morning.

The short answer is yes, of course I am.

I could bore you with my usual listing of The Things That Keep My Life Busy but I bet most of you could write it for me at this point.

And then there's the fact of some bizarre illness I seem to have acquired. I woke up yesterday morning with a KILLER headache. Now, I'm no stranger to headaches. I probably average a headache every other day or so. I ignore them until I can't turn my head without grimacing in pain. Then I take ibuprofen. This headache was different. It was constant and throbbing and impossible to ignore. Accompanying the pain were overwhelming fatigue and a complete loss of appetite (!). Doctors out there (Alisson?)....could I have a brain hemorrhage? Whatever this sickness is, it's engulfed my entire weekend and therefore I hate it passionately.

Friday night I hosted a reception for my students and their weekend hosts. This is the weekend they spend in an American household. I was proud of the match-ups I'd arranged. Then I had to dash over to Rogers, Ark. to try to catch the last of D.'s performance with a band who were playing this opening party for an arts festival. The arts festival was held at the new fancy outdoor mall. The party was in an unfinished "loft space" overlooking The Sunglass Hut, Gymboree, Haagen Dazs, P.F. Chang's, etc .etc. In some ways I guess it was an apt embodiment of the uneasy relationship between the arts and financial benefactors. There was no air conditioning in the "loft," rendering the party extra stuffy, despite the thunderstorm rolling in. That storm sat over us all weekend, only enhancing my headache-y, listless demeanor.

I've been reading the blog of a dead artist most of the afternoon.

Last week I went with a group of Japanese students to Terra Studios and used it as an opportunity to take amateurish artsy photos and be an unwilling and unknowing host to at least 20 seed ticks. Maybe I have Lyme Disease? Alisson?

Things I've Been Watching:
  • Top Chef (Glad Howie's gone. Sad that Tre is. Looking forward to Anthony Bourdain next week!)
  • Volver - I can't believe it took me so long to see this film. It was really really really good. Probably the best thing I've seen this year. GO SEE IT! It's one of those rare films that is centered around women and isn't embarrassingly sentimental. I loved the acting, loved the plot, loved the faux magic realism....JUST GO SEE IT ALREADY!
  • Little Children - I felt suckered by the critics into watching this film. It was excruciating! Okay, so it was beautifully filmed (I'm an admitted sucker for artful cinematography), but the story and the way it unfolded just made me cringe. I tried to slow fast-forward it with the subtitles on (an old trick when I can't bear to watch a film anymore but can't just turn it off and walk away either) but D. wouldn't let me. Compromise is key to a good relationship, I've been told, so I nearly died sitting there for all eternity while this film dragged on and on and then ended with a sickening, dull thud.
  • loudQUIETloud - A Film About The Pixies - I'm a diehard Pixies fan, so I loved the shit out of this. There's something so....authentic about that band. Doing things for the money, balancing marriage, kids, and a career, rehab, mortality, middle age, man's all here. And of course really great concert sequences.
Things I'm Listening To:
  • This American Life - I listened to last week's episode at six a.m. and when the adopted son gives his speech and thanks his parents for all they'd done, I was choking up. Sobbing at six a.m. is an odd sensation. This week's episode was equally good. And emotional in a different way. I'M embarrassingly sentimental...sheesh.
  • The new Ryan Adams. I give it a vote of "eh."
  • Old favorites - The Pixies (see above), The Replacements, Fleetwood Mac, Elvis Costello. It's hard for me to seek out new stuff when I know I can always come back to my favorites.
Things I'm Looking Forward To:
  • Lucinda Williams in concert September 20. Front row balcony seats with my sweetie.
  • A theoretical vacation in the Smoky Mountains sometime soon?
  • Spoon in concert September 30 - for free!
  • Cooler temperatures.
  • The end of my daughter's teenage years. Or at least the end of her teenage attitude. Light at the end of the tunnel? We haven't even GOTTEN to the tunnel yet. Ugh.
  • Anthony Bourdain at the Fayetteville Public Library October 19! I hear he's cooking....


Jonah said...

Welcome back! We all missed you and your tales.

afro moon said...

You forgot to add that I thought you had maybe run off with a carnie.
It's been so long since I've seen you.. but we will totally reunite at Spoon & Bourdain.
Fun in Fayetteville? WTF?

miss marty said...

can i use that fourth picture - the one of the birds in rows - as my desktop? it's so cute!


Stephanie said...

Spoon is coming to Fayetteville? ! Where??!

Alannah said...

Thanks y'all!

Afro Moon - when are you going to come out with your signature incense? And yes, can't wait to do fun things in F'ville. I think smokers will have the advantage when Mr. Bourdain comes to town...I bet he'll take multiple smoke breaks.

Marty...of course you can use any of my photos! Hope this week goes well at school.

Stephanie - Yeah, at the Greek Theater of all places! Here's the info.

Anonymous said...

Your headache story reminds me of the old SNL skits "I think I have a tu-ma". I must've had a sympathy headache for ya because I had a bad one on Saturday and I'm not a usual headache-getter. Though, I think mine was from some serious stress from work that has been going on.
Oh well, your blue birds of happiness made me happy. Thanks!

afro moon said...

Good idea Alannah.. but I'm not sure too many people would purchase whiskey scented incense.

5 of 9er said...

Top Chef... yea!
New Ryan Adams... I like it... I really do, and I gave up on him long agol.
And you can never go wrong with Lucinda or the Smokey Moutains. :)

ReckenRoll said...

I think we all just needed to take a little break at the end of August. :)

And, I liked Little Children because of the storytelling...but I too was left thinking the ending could have been much better.

Serious let down at the end.