Saturday, March 23, 2019

"Death To Flying Things" (23/31)

23 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

I made a decision - Ichiro's final time on a MLB field is worth watching on a screen larger than my phone. I turned on the TV and mirrored my screen through the Apple TV, bringing the stadium in Japan into my living room. The grin on my face stretched as wide as the moments of the standing ovation and hugs among players, coaches, and management. My mind racing back to the first time I ever heard of this guy who will end up in the Hall of Fame.

I had partial season tickets to the Mariners for a few years when baseball in Seattle moved from the Kingdome to the new baseball stadium. The single tickets I had to many games the last few years at the Kingdome weren't going to be so easy to come by and friends were eager to be regulars at the stadium as well. We loved our seats, loved cheering on our team, and loved our chances to be together.

When I wasn't at the stadium, I listened to Dave Niehaus announce on the radio. One day he spoke, excitedly, about this new player that had come over from Japan. I remember Dave calling him "Death To Flying Things" as he made incredible outfield plays that game. I happened to be going to the game the next night and made a sign touting the new slogan. The title never stuck, but that didn't make it any less true.

It was difficult to have Ichiro leave Seattle, especially to play for that damn team. (A-Rod left the year Ichiro arrived and the bitter taste for the Yankees had greatly intensified.) For some reason it wasn't as painful to see him in a Marlin's uniform. 

This is a story with a happy ending, not only did Ichiro come back to Seattle to coach, but he came back to play - and was able to retire, in a Mariner's uniform, in Japan; one more Hall of Famer, headed to Cooperstown.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Openings (22/31)

22 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

"Mom, do you know which hole the baby comes out?"

"Go finish getting ready for bed and we can talk about it."

I am not delaying the conversation. This is simply my standard answer to the myriad of delay tactics that arise on a daily basis. She doesn't seem to have figured out my canned response since she asks, "Have you figured it out yet?" when I enter her room a few minutes later.

Smiling I assure her I already knew. We discuss the three 'holes' and what comes out of each one, in the depth she is ready for. When I start to explain more about the uterus, she has no interest instead creating an alliteration.

"Pee. Poo." [Pause] "Pupil!" she adds, quite proud of her wordsmithing.

I introduce the term 'progeny', which she agrees is better - and then revisit which orifice is which, thankful for the opening for our conversation and praying they continue.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Terrified (21/31)

21 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

The front door opens and closes. "Who's here?" I ask.

With a voice that is stronger than makes sense, as I hear the sobbing underlying the sounds, my daughter says her name. I am flying down the stairs, scenarios running through my head. Is there blood or damaged bones? Did the usual supportive group of girls turn mean? Did someone do something inappropriate?

Seeing no blood nor any body part she is clutching, I wrap my arms around her helmet clad body that is gasping for air through her sobs.

"What happened?" I ask.

Through the nearly hysterical sobbing all I can gathering is something about the squash court and getting locked in and someone finally coming by to let her out. I sit and gathering her onto my lap, hugging and soothing as her breathing slows down and the sobbing subsides. She is safe. She is home.

We can't immediately go investigate the scene as I have a four year old over for a playdate - giving him a chance to be out of his house. He's been cooped up with asthma issues, including several nights at the hospital. There is also a newborn at home, so a change of scenery and some attention paid just to him is helpful to everyone. "Can we send him home?" my daughter asks.

Immediately weighing the needs of both children, I ask the four year old to go try three cars on the race track we have been assembling while I have my daughter head to her room - where she can close the door. I am fully aware that I have an only child; her need for the walls of her house to be her refuge is apparent.

Once it is just the two of us I ask if she wants to go take a look at the squash courts. A vigorous nod as she quickly heads to put her shoes on answers my question. Her explanation of the scene is that the outside of the door has a handle. Once inside she closed the door to contain her ball, but when she went to leave she realize there is no lever on the inside, thus she was stuck. Crying and screaming for help, she banged on the glass until a worker appeared and let her out.

We walk across the compound, hand in hand, her telling me about where she rode and parked her scooter, which door she used to enter the building - in essence, she is revisiting the events that led up to her terror.

"He closed the door again, once he let me out," she says as I approach the horizontal bar that is the handle. Pushing down, the door swings in easily. I take a couple of steps - she remains rooted outside. Examining the inside panel I realize what has happened, test my theory, and then show it to her while I explain.

"They can't have a handle sticking out on the inside because squash can be very physical, with people bouncing off the walls to make their plays. In order to keep the players safe they have made the surface flat, but if you pull this ring up you can turn it and it turns the knob."

Her shoulders relax, as the tension drains from her body - there is a way out. She closes the door, with me on the inside, watching from the outside as I demonstrate the theory I have explained. As I open the door she steps in, trying for herself.

We hug and walk home, hand in hand, talking about I'm not sure what.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

A Slice (20/31)

20 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

How did I post late at night for all those years? How did I make it through March after March, living my day, on the lookout for small moments, and then find the energy to fashion words to the page before falling into bed at night? I was a successful "Late Night Slicer", but no longer.

Perhaps it was because I started in my 30s.

Perhaps it was having a very young child kept me running at a higher rpm, always.
Perhaps it was my husband working insane hours so my evenings were mine - with no chance of time together.

Whatever it was, it isn't any longer. 

I still heighten my senses as a writer during March, knowing that I will be responsible for crafting something each day. The big difference seems to be that now, when the clock is pushing three, all I can think of is being 'done' - 'stick a fork in me; done', and heading home. If my slice hasn't been written, I'm not sure what - if anything - will show up on the page.

This month started strong! I wrote before the day was done, but as a post for the following day - just waiting for the New York clock to strike midnight. It felt so good!

The past ten days have been a struggle; not everyday, but struggle enough. The calendar says we've made it two thirds of the way through the month. It's time to dig deep and finish strong. Time to post this and drive home, thinking through the moment of my days, mentally crafting what I shall write next.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Exasperation (19/31)

19 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

Rushing in
I sat down.

And then,
in the middle of my business,
look to the side - 
ready to gather the needed papers.


Instead of white squares
there is nothing,
but a drab roll.

This, when I know,
for a fact,
on the other side of the room
there is a package of new rolls,
ready to be used.

Why is it so hard,
for some,
to replace
what they use up?

Monday, March 18, 2019

Rough Morning (18/31)

18 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

Though I hadn't wanted to get out of bed, now that my workout was behind me I was glad that I did. Shower head pointing to the corner I count off the ten seconds I know it takes for the water to warm up. Fingers splashing in the spray, I count another five second, wondering if I had counted too quickly. It's still not warm so I count to ten again, the annoyance starting to creep in as I begin to realize the hot water is not functioning - again. 

The towel still on the floor from drying my feet I dial the gatehouse to report our predicament and then find something to put on, knowing the doorbell will ring shortly.


As the non-choreographed ballet plays out in the kitchen, the three of us dancing around the island and table, each working on their own tasks related to breakfast or lunch prep, I glide to the refrigerator. Opening the door I run through the bits I need to carry out my mental plans for each lunch box.

I look once. Twice. Once I'm certain it isn't hiding behind something else I ask my daughter, "Did you eat the quesadilla for snack yesterday?"

"Yes", she replied.

"Bummer as I told you that was planned for your lunch today."

"You don't understand ANYTHING! I was starving and had to eat something!"


Trying to look presentable without a shower and having just had pre-pubescent anguish unleashed upon me I head to my bathroom. When I need to wash my hands the faucets response is naught. With a huge sigh I head to the phone to once again dial the gatehouse.

"Now we have zero water" I tell the man who answers, hoping to find words that will translate well as hot water has just become of less concern than completely dry taps.


Entering my daughter's room to make sure she will make the bus in the midst of her own rough morning I find her accessorizing rather than brushing her teeth and applying sunscreen.


I'll spare you the rest of the details, but will say - I was sure glad to get to work!

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Rolling By (17/31)

17 of 31 - SOLSC 2019

The dream faded slowly, replaced by pain in my head. The room was pitch dark - the house quiet; some time in the middle of the night. Rolling over I grappled for my phone, with the press of a button a soft light showed 3:12 a.m. The pain still in my head, legs about to swing out from under the covers, I heard a rumbling. 

Oh! If there is a storm about to start that explains the pain in my head and perhaps I won't need to take anything - the pain will burst with the rain. 

I pad across the tiles to the bathroom watching the room briefly illuminate as lightning flashes across the sky. Back to the cozy sheets, listening to the rain drive down; rumbling turning to crashes, I sit in bed scrolling through Facebook.

The storm and the pain roll away and I'm snuggled back into bed for another hour of sleep.